Magazine article USA TODAY

Similarities, Disparities for Types 1 and 2

Magazine article USA TODAY

Similarities, Disparities for Types 1 and 2

Article excerpt

In the simplest terms, people with diabetes have elevated blood glucose (or sugar) levels. While there are distinct differences between type 1 and type 2 forms, both are caused by insufficient levels of insulin, the hormone needed to produce and regulate blood sugar.

Basic symptoms for both types include fatigue, unexplained weight loss, increased thirst and urination, blurry vision, and greater appetite. One of the most prevalent complications is eye disease such as glaucoma, cataracts, and, most severely, blindness.

Diabetic eye disease develops as the result of having prolonged elevated blood sugar. Studies show that about 28% of affected patients develop eye disease. "Unfortunately, there are no obvious symptoms, so it's crucial that patients get an annual eye exam," emphasizes Ildiko Lingvay, a diabetes specialist at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas. "The higher the blood sugar is above normal levels, the higher the patient's risk of developing eye disease. …

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