Home Blogs Diabetes and its Complications
Diabetes and its Complications

Posted by : Varun Doshi

On : 05 June 2014

Comments : 7

Views : 3195


Diabetes is a group of metabolic diseases in which a person has high blood sugar. This high blood sugar produces the symptoms of frequent urination, increased thirst, and increased hunger. Untreated, diabetes can cause many complications. Acute complications include diabetic ketoacidosis and nonketotic hyperosmolar coma. Serious long-term complications include heart disease, kidney failure, and damage to the eyes.

Diabetes is due to either the pancreas not producing enough insulin or because cells of the body do not respond properly to the insulin that is produced.

There are three main types of diabetes:

 Type 1 Diabetes results from the body's failure to produce insulin. This form was previously referred to as "insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus" (IDDM) or "juvenile diabetes".

Type 2 Diabetes results from insulin resistance, a condition in which cells fail to use insulin properly, sometimes also with an absolute insulin deficiency. This form was previously referred to as non insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM) or "adult-onset diabetes".

Gestational diabetes, is the third main form and occurs when pregnant women without a previous diagnosis of diabetes develop a high blood glucose level.

The main effects of Diabetes are on the blood vessels and nervous system which in turn can affect many other parts of the body.

Diabetes may harm body organs seriously if proper care and precautions are not taken. Many serious complications might be faced by a diabetic patient.

The main effects are as follows:

Eye Complications, Skin Complications, Ulcer Neuropathy, Kidney Diseases, Blood Pressure Problems, Gastroparesis, HHNS (Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic Nonketotic Syndrome), Strokes, Dental Problems, Heart Problems, Digestion Problems, Poor wound Healing Problems to name a few.

Now let's discuss each one of them in detail

1. Eye complications:

One of the most common complication which occurs due to diabetes is the increase in glucose level, which in turn can affect the eye which is the most sensitive part of the body. The problem starts with blurry vision in initial stage, which results in loss of vision or other eye diseases.

Eye diseases with diabetes:

Retinopathy: The Changes and damages of blood vessels in the retina defined the stage that causes Retinopathy.

Cataract: The dim, clouding effects on eyes lens which make the vision unclear.

Glaucoma: The fluid rise, inside the eyes, results in damaging of optic nerves, which can lead to failure of vision.

Regular check-up of eyes and  controlling blood sugar level might help in reducing the risk of these eye diseases.

2. Skin Complications:

If someone is suffering from diabetes, that person should take care of skin very well. The effects on skin and skin problems due to diabetes can arise drastically.

Scleredema diabeticorum: Mostly occur in type 2 diabetes, skin gets hardened on the back side of neck with the upper back side. The main precaution is to control blood sugar level, creams and moistures can improve skin condition in case of emergency.

Vitiligo: It is seen more in type 1 diabetes then compared to type 2 diabetic patients. In vitiligo one of the substance creates pigment that have the property to manage skin color so as to damag them resulting in problems with skin coloration. The skin patches mainly formed on the chest and abdomen, and might be seen at the face mouth, nostrils, and eyes.

Some of the treatment includes topical steroids and micropigmentation and sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher can be used.

(Related 6 Tips to Lower the Risk of Diabetes)

3. Ulcer:

Usually seen on the surface of the foot, over the heels, and over the metatarsal heads, the skin generally become moisture less, dull with cracks, hardens and warm but lumps not seen and resulting in loss of sensation by the patient.

Regular check up of foot and control in glucose level with proper care and other necessary steps may reduce the risk of ulcer in diabetes.

4. Neuropathy:

In neuropathy, person is unable to experience the sensation of pain because of damage in nerves.

5. Kidney Diseases:

One of the severe complications in diabetes is of kidney problems and in some severe cases kidney failure is also seen. Treatment is necessary to put a stop to kidney problems and other health problems like heart attack, strokes and other related disease with diabetes.

Diabetic nephropathy is the kidney problem where the filters get spoiled and damaged which results in leakage of protein from the blood in urine, this protein known as albumin. The abnormal leakage of albumin is a warning of kidney damage.

Diseases formed through the nonstandard outflow of albumin are the following:

Microalbuminuria: Incipient nephropathy; qty of albumin per day 30 to 300mg, flow of albumin in the urine

Proteinuria: Macroalbuminuria or overt nephropathy; Qty more than 300 mg

6. Blood Pressure Problems:

One of the common and general problems with diabetes is the problem of high blood pressure and now days very common.

The pressure of blood running inside vessels is measured in millimeters of mercury (mm Hg), is known as blood pressure.

7. Gastroparesis:

The course of action where the stomach is not able to clean and vacant the food with the normal process due of the breakage of vague, whose main function is to manage and control digestive system.

8. HHNS (Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic Nonketotic Syndrome):

It’s one kind of problem which can arise in diabetes, usually associate with type2 diabetes that covers enormously heart blood sugar level without the occurrence of ketones. Ketones are the byproducts of fat division.

9. Strokes:
Generally, people who are suffering from diabetes are more likely to get a stroke as compared to healthy individuals. Usually the main cause of strokes are uncontrolled high blood pressure, or hypertension. The high blood pressure problem in diabetic patient is a common sight.

10. Dental Problems:

Gums and teeth bones become weak in diabetes because of improper blood sugar level. Dental problems might occur in diabetes patients, so proper care is necessary and regular checkups are very essential.

11. Heart problems:
Heart problems faced by diabetic patients are due breakage and damage of blood vessels due to high blood pressure.

Coronary artery disease (CAD) & Congestive heart failure (CHF) are the two types of heart problems.

Coronary artery disease (CAD) also known as atherosclerotic heart disease, coronary heart disease, or ischemic heart disease (IHD), is the most common type of heart disease and cause of heart attacks. The disease is caused by plaque building up along the inner walls of the arteries of the heart, which narrows the arteries and reduces blood flow to the heart.

Congestive heart failure (CHF), often used to mean chronic heart failure (CHF), occurs when the heart is unable to provide sufficient pump action to maintain blood flow to meet the needs of the body. When edema is present in addition to the above it is called congestive heart failure (CHF) or congestive cardiac failure (CCF). Heart failure can cause a number of symptoms including shortness of breath, leg swelling, and exercise intolerance.

12. Poor wound Healing Problems:

The healing process in diabetic patients is slow compared to normal individual, the wounds may go through worse condition resulting in the healing process of the body to become very slow.

Main reason behind this problem is slow circulation of blood. Immunity becomes low in diabetic patients as compared to the healthy ones.


Many severe complications might be faced in diabetes, hence they say precaution/prevention is better than cure. Apart from changes in lifestyle and food habits, consultation with a physician is a must in diabetes. please do not delay it!