What is diabetes?
Diabetes mellitus has become national disease. Obesity, lack of exercise and food with too many carbohydrates have made up to 10% of germans sugar patients.
With healthy people, the sugar transported in the blood is delivered to the cells in the body and transformed into energy that the cells need. Insulin is a endogenous substance of the pancreas, which signals the cells to take in the resource. If insulin doesn't work on that cell or if its missing, the cells don't open for the glucose, the exchange doesn't take place - the blood enriches with sugar. Repeated control of the blood sugar then becomes an important daily task. The cause of this disease and the implications are different, two types are distinguished:
Diabetes mellitus I and II
The disease diabetes mellitus is distinguished between two types: Type I is chronic and there is no cure (yet). The affected will never live without any additional insulin. Type II patients can theoretically live without it, when watching their nutrition and a conscient way of life. Measuring the blood sugar will still be mandatory, to watch life- endangering hyper- or hypoglycemia.
Type I- Diabetes developes in youth and can be counteracted by early prophylaxis. The affected have an absolute insulin defficiency, because the pancreas stop the production. A daily intake of insulin is for people with type I mandatory, because blood sugar can not be reduced at all. But that is not the only negative effect. If insulin is missing, fatty acids in the blood are not processed and instead of glucose, proteins and fat is reduced in the cells. Then, it comes to higher deposits in the blood cells - circulation disorders and heart attacks aswell as strokes can happen.
This type of diabetes used to be called age- diabetes, because mostly seniors developed it in the later part of their life. Because of unhealthy and non- balanced nutrition, lack of exercise and the resulting obesity, the term has become outdated. Today, 95% of all people with diabetes of all ages are type II- patients - also kids! If the disease is identified early enough, treatment is not out of the question. With healthy nutrition aswell as exercise aswell as a normal BMI, the disease can be fought.
In contrast to type I, the pancreas generate insulin, but the cells develop a resistance against it and stop being able to take in and process the sugar from the blood. At the same time, the body produces more insulin, because the cells signal, that they need energy.
Measuring blood sugar
To check their own blood sugar , diabetics use intelligent measuring devices. One little drop of blood, taken with a little needle from the tip of the finger, is sucked up by a disposable testing strip in a blood sugar measuring device. The device checks the amount of sugar. Using this data, the diabetic can decide how he wants to procede: Taking in more insulin, how much he needs to take in or if the sugar levels are too low. Normally, its enough to check the levels of sugar throughout the day. But what is important, is to know when to check, because a reading before a meal is always going to be lower than one about an hour after. Most doctors advise doing both, because you can judge the amount of insulin needed better.
Is diabetes dangerous?
An absolute insulin deficiency, like with type I can, if not treated, lead to death. This is not because of too high blood sugar, but because of acidosis with ketons. When the body is missing insulin, it can't generate energy from carbohydrates and it uses fat reserves for energy. And because of that, ketons are generated. This endangers the body cells and leads to death.
Bad metabolism can lead to other diseases of the heart and circulatory system. Heart attacks are the most common.
Changing between blood sugar measuring systems
To be allowed as a medicinal product, blood sugar measuring systems go through thorough clinical studies. They also need to match the specifications oft the ISO 15197. This allows only a deviation of ±15% to the laboratory reference value. A measuring system that is at the lower end of the spectrum might have a difference of almost 30% to one at the higher end. At the same time, both are correct. A comparison between two measuring systems for private use permits no judgement, which is better (You would have to know about clinical studies and statistical distribution for both the systems in comparison to the laboratory reference value.).
The change from one of the devices to the next and the change in the readings can be unsettling. Because of that, you should be speaking to your doctor and inform them of your change of system instead of changing your dosing or behaviour. After talking to your doctor, you will get used to the new values and trust in your system. The measuring system by Medisana fulfills the newest, strongest specifications of ISO 15197 Edition 2013. To give your doctor background information about the technology and accuracy, it is best to show him the leaflet of the Medisana strips. (Measuring systems that were brought onto the market before 2013 were by specifications from 2003 and were allowed to deviate by up to 20%. Those can not be sold from June 2016 on.)