Diabetes has been a growing health concern in America throughout the past decade. Today, 25.8 million Americans have diabetes. That is 8.3% of our population! Diabetes does not discriminate; it affects both males and females approximately equally and is present among all ethnicities.
Diabetes is a disease in which the body either does not make enough insulin or is unable to use the insulin it has produced. Insulin is required for metabolism and sugar (glucose) absorption. If insulin is ineffective or not produced it leads to diabetes. Diabetes can be subcategorized into Type 2, Type 1 and Gestational.
Type 2 Diabetes (non-insulin dependent) is the most common type. Type 2 accounts for 90-95% of diagnosed cases in adulthood. Type 1 Diabetes (Juvenile-onset) is less common and is often diagnosed in childhood. Gestational Diabetes occurs in 2-10% of pregnancies. Many patients with Gestational Diabetes do not go on to develop diabetes permanently, but it does increase their risk of developing Diabetes within the next decade by 35-60%. All of these types require constant management in order to maintain healthy levels of insulin.
The total cost of health care and medical expenses related to Diabetes is $147 billion annually. This shocking number directly reflects the amount of medical attention Diabetes requires, making Diabetes not only an individual health concern but a concern for our country as well. Diabetics who properly manage their Diabetes can reduce their healthcare expenses as well as decrease their risks of complications related to this disease. Many complications can arise as Diabetes progresses; these will be discussed in our next blog.
If you or someone you know has diabetes and have foot issues related with this disease, please call our office and make an appointment with Dr. Gary Friedlander or Dr. Jay Larson with Sole Foot and Ankle Specialists in Glendale, Arizona.