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      HealthWACH: Diagnosing diabetes


      Type 1 diabetes typically occurs in children and young adults. This condition does not allow the body to produce insulin, which is the hormone that is needed to transfer food into energy. Patients with type 1 diabetes rely on insulin treatments and therapy to survive. Type 2 diabetes is a condition in which the body causes blood sugar levels to rise higher than normal. Also referred to as hyperglycemia, type 2 diabetes is the most common form of diabetes and can also be the most dangerous.

      Symptoms of diabetes depend on the patient and type of diabetes. Some patients may not experience any symptoms, while others may suffer from severe symptoms. Common signs and symptoms are:

      • Extreme hunger
      • Excessive urination
      • High blood pressure
      • Blurred vision
      • Weight loss
      • Ketones in urine
      • Slow-healing sores

      Although, there is not a cure for diabetes, there are ways to prevent symptoms from interfering with everyday life. A few treatment options include eating healthy, becoming physically active, monitoring blood sugar levels, and medication. Following these basic treatment options will enhance your physical performance and increase your ability to live a normal functioning life.

      Glycated hemoglobin, also known as HbA1c, is a form of hemoglobin used primarily to monitor long-term diabetes control. This helps doctors understand how well the patient's diabetes is being managed from a treatment or dosing perspective. The HbA1c test differs from a patient-administered blood glucose test, which takes a snapshot of a patient's blood sugar level at a moment in time. Laboratories are seeing an increase of HbA1c testing due to the rise in patients with diabetes. More than 346 million people worldwide are living with diabetes, and the World Diabetes Foundation estimates that number will increase by nearly 27 percent by 2030. The blood test provides a result to the physician in just 36 minutes. â??We are pleased to offer an important tool to address the need for a fully automated glycated hemoglobin assay, which can meet the demands of increased testing volumes. With this test, health care providers can now confidently measure their patients' management of diabetes and use this information to potentially improve treatment decisions,â?? Brian Blaser, executive vice president, Diagnostics Products, Abbott, was quoted as saying.