Overview of Clinical Complications of Diabetes
The Diabetes Control and Complications Trial (DCCT), a landmark 10-year study, demonstrated that persons who lowered their blood glucose concentration have a better chance of delaying or preventing complications that affect the eyes (retinopathy), kidneys (nephropathy), and nerves (neuropathy). Two groups of patients with type 1 diabetes were studied: one group followed a standard treatment regimen and the other group followed an intensive treatment regimen. Persons who lowered their blood glucose levels practiced the intensive treatment regimens which included careful self-monitoring of glucose, multiple daily insulin injections, and close physician contact.
Clinical complications associated with diabetes may include the following:
Persons with diabetes must stay alert for symptoms that can lead to clinical complications. The best way to do this is to:
- get regular checkups - finding problems early is the best way to keep complications from becoming serious.
- keep appointments with your physician - even when you are feeling well.
- be aware of symptoms and warning signs - such as vision problems (blurriness, spots), fatigue, pale skin color, obesity (more than 20 pounds overweight), numbness or tingling feelings in hands or feet, repeated infections or slow healing of wounds, chest pain, vaginal itching, or constant headaches.
- carefully self-monitor blood sugar levels several times a day, as directed by your physician.
- control weight.
- eat a healthy, well-balanced diet.
- get regular exercise.
- check your feet every day for even minor cuts or blisters.
- quit smoking.
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Online Resources of Diabetes