Diabetes Mellitus: The patient profile.

In November we celebrate National Diabetes Month. According to the Cleveland Clinic, Diabetes mellitus is a disease that prevents your body from properly using the energy from the food you eat. Hispanics, African Americans, and American Indians are some of the groups with a high risk of having diabetes. As reported by the American Diabetes Association (ADA), 1.5 million Americans are diagnosed with diabetes mellitus every year.  To contribute to creating awareness, today we will see the case of Mr. B. Doe. (Per HIPAA regulations, all the patient information below is fictional and is not intended to portray any real person’s medical information.)

So, how does the profile of a patient with diabetes mellitus look like?

Name: Mr. B Doe

Age: 50 y/o

Gender: Male

Reason to visit doctor: Follow up appointment to discuss diagnostic test results for diabetes mellitus (Type 2). In the previous appointment Mr. B. Doe reported feeling tired and hungry a lot and unexplained weight loss.  He also mentioned that his vision had been blurry and asked if he could be referred to an ophthalmologist.

Family history: His grandmother had diabetes type 2. Parents did not.

Lifestyle: He describes his diet as “not a very healthy one” and he mentions having a sedentary lifestyle.

Causes: The Physician informs Mr. Doe that the cause of diabetes mellitus is not known, but that the risks factors include the following:

  • Family history of diabetes
  • History of gestational diabetes
  • Age
  • Abnormal blood cholesterol or triglyceride levels
  • High blood pressure
  • Among others

Diagnostic tests: The physician informs Mr. B Doe about the different diagnostic tests such as the fasting sugar blood test, the glycated hemoglobin test (A1c blood test), and the random plasma glucose test.

Table. 1 Types of diagnostic tests for diabetes

Diagnosis: Mr. B Doe was finally diagnosed with Diabetes type 2 according to the test results and his symptoms. In this type of diabetes, the body stops responding to sugar since pancreas is not able to produce enough insulin.

Table 2. Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes.

Management and lifestyle improvements: Following the American Diabetes Association (ADA) Standards of Medical Care in Diabetes and considering that the treatment is individualized, Mr. B Doe’s management of diabetes includes a balanced diet, insulin therapy, exercising regularly, checking blood sugar levels regularly, staying hydrated, planning meals and coordinating them with medications. The most used anti-hyperglycemic medications are Metformin, SGLT2 Inhibitors, and Sulfonylureas, among others.

Sources

Diabetes Mellitus: Types, Risk Factors, Symptoms, Treatments. (n.d.). Retrieved November 05, 2020, from https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases/7104-diabetes-mellitus-an-overview

Diabetes Care. Introduction: Standards of Medical Care in Diabetes—2020. (2019). Diabetes Care, 43(Supplement 1). doi:10.2337/dc20-sint

Dansinger, M. (2018, November 01). Diabetes Diagnosis: Tests Used to Detect Diabetes. Retrieved November 05, 2020, from https://www.webmd.com/diabetes/guide/diagnosis-diabetes

Wexler, D. (2020). Patient education: Type 2 diabetes: Overview (Beyond the Basics). Retrieved November 06, 2020, from https://www.uptodate.com/contents/type-2-diabetes-overview-beyond-the-basics

Osborn, C. (2020, October 28). What Are the Differences Between Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes? Retrieved November 07, 2020, from https://www.healthline.com/health/difference-between-type-1-and-type-2-diabetes

Cherney, K. (2020, June 17). List of Common Diabetes Medications. Retrieved November 07, 2020, from https://www.healthline.com/health/diabetes/medications-list

Mayo Clinic Staff (2020, June 06). Diabetes management: How lifestyle, daily routine affect blood sugar. Retrieved November 07, 2020, from https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/diabetes/in-depth/diabetes-management/art-20047963

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