Diabetes

Patrick W. Hisel, MD, PA

Family Medicine Practice & Primary Care Physician located in Mineral Wells, TX & Weatherford, TX

Over 30 million Americans are estimated to have diabetes, nearly 9.5% of the entire United States population, and more than 1 in 3 adults in the U.S. may have prediabetes, a precursor to the Type 2 form of the disease. Left untreated, the complications of diabetes can leave you blind or at risk of losing toes, feet, or legs. Patrick W. Hisel, MD, PA, in Mineral Wells and Weatherford, Texas, can help you manage Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes, and also assist you in making the necessary lifestyle changes. Call or click to schedule an appointment today.

Diabetes Q & A

What is diabetes?

Diabetes is not just one condition, but a group of diseases related to the way your body uses blood glucose, also called blood sugar. While the causes for the various conditions are different, each leaves you with too much glucose in your blood. High levels of glucose have a negative effect on many systems in your body, so treatment focuses on ways to reduce blood glucose levels.

Glucose itself isn’t the culprit behind diabetes, since it’s the fuel your body’s cells need to function. Instead, problems with the hormone insulin create the high levels of blood glucose present in diabetes.

Type 1 diabetics suffer from an autoimmune system disorder, which kills the cells in your pancreas that produce insulin. Insulin is the messenger that tells your cells when to open and accept glucose for energy. When no insulin is produced, cells can’t get the glucose they need for energy.

Type 2 diabetics are still producing insulin, but the body builds up a resistance to it. Cells require ever greater amounts of insulin before they accept glucose for energy. Eventually, the need for insulin is greater than the body can produce.

Prediabetes and gestational diabetes are potentially reversible forms of the disease. Untreated, prediabetes advances into the Type 2 form, while gestational diabetes usually resolves after childbirth.

What causes diabetes?

Type 1 diabetes is suspected to come from combinations of genetics and environmental factors that aren’t precisely known. Similarly, the causes of Type 2 diabetes may have a genetic link, and obesity is strongly connected to developing the condition.

However, not all overweight people will develop Type 2 diabetes, nor are all Type 2 diabetics overweight.

Gestational diabetes is a complication for some women during pregnancy, when the pancreas can’t keep up with the demand for insulin. Prediabetes shares its origins with the causes of Type 2 diabetes.

How is diabetes treated?

One of the most effective treatments for Type 2 diabetes includes lifestyle changes to improve your diet and increase your levels of physical activity, both of which promote weight loss, which can help your body by reducing insulin resistance. Dr. Hisel can help you with testing and support for your weight loss efforts.

Oral medication can reduce blood glucose levels to help control Type 2 diabetes in its early stages. Later, when supplemental insulin is necessary, or for Type 1 patients, Dr. Hisel can assist you with insulin therapy.

Now seeing New Patients in our Weatherford Clinic. Call us to schedule an appointment.