Diabetes

25 November 2016

Steps to keep diabetic complications at bay

People with diabetes should go for regular doctor visits and tests, and may also need to see specialists from time to time.

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People with diabetes are at risk for vascular complications due to high blood sugar levels, but can take measures to reduce that risk, an expert says.

Vascular complications

"Diabetes is one of the strongest risk factors for any form of vascular disease, both symptomatic and asymptomatic," Dr Gregory Moneta, chief of vascular surgery at Oregon Health and Science University's Cardiovascular Institute, said in a Society for Vascular Surgery news release.

"Those with diabetes should have regular doctor visits and tests, and may need to see specialists such as ophthalmologists, vascular surgeons and podiatrists for checkups," he added.

Read: Devices help control diabetes

Vascular complications caused by diabetes include diabetic eye disease, peripheral artery disease (impaired circulation in the legs), peripheral neuropathy (nerve damage) and foot ulcers, heart attack and kidney failure.

Steps to prevent these complications includes: regular eye exams; exercise; proper footwear and frequent foot checks; maintaining healthy weight and blood sugar and cholesterol levels, quitting smoking, regular checkups, and seeing a doctor when experiencing problems such as leg pain, chest pain.

November is National Diabetes Awareness Month.

Read more:

Book release: Managing diabetes and health-related challenges

Breakthrough: how type 2 diabetes can be reversed

Diabetes 'survivors' give clues

 

Ask the Expert

Diabetes expert

Dr. May currently works as a fulltime endocrinologist and has been in private practice since 2004. He has a variety of interests, predominantly obesity and diabetes, but also sees patients with osteoporosis, thyroid disorders, men's health disorders, pituitary and adrenal disorders, polycystic ovaries, and disorders of growth. He is a leading member of several obesity and diabetes societies and runs a trial centre for new drugs.

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