Diabetes an Egyptian papyrus that was translated

Diabetes is one of the fastest growing diseases in America and as a Hispanic male my

race and age put me at a higher risk of getting this disease later in life. According to the

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Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) over 30 million people have diabetes in

America making up 9% of the US population. Out of that number over 23 million were

diagnosed cases and the other 7 million were undiagnosed cases. Americans with prediabetes

total over 84 million making up 34% of the US population and according to the American

Diabetes Association (ADA) diabetes is ranked the 7th leading cause of death in America. After

seeing those types of statistics, it’s a wonder most Americans sleep at night. In this research

paper I will identify Diabetes Mellitus and give some history as to how it was discovered. I will

detail the two types of diabetes; Type 1 and type 2 diabetes; I will talk about the symptoms,

screening, treatment and management for this disease. Finally, I will conclude my research paper

with the effects that this type of disease can have on a person quality of life and how it affects

your day to day on goings.

The first mentioned of Diabetes comes from an Egyptian papyrus that was translated in

Latin and English in 1875 by an Egyptologist by the name of George Ebers. This Egyptian

papyrus is believed to be the oldest medical document in existence and is believed to have been

written in 1552 B.C. The document references a phrase which reads “to eliminate urination

which is too plentiful” which is believed to be the first known description of the disease. The

term Diabetes Mellitus was later coined by an individual by the name of Apollonius of Memphis

around 250 B.C. The term Diabetes was later recorded in English in 1425. In 1675 the word

Mellitus was later added by a gentleman named Thomas Willis. In the 17th century Diabetes

Mellitus was called the “pissing evil.” It was given that name because of the frequent urination

symptom that individuals had who were believed to have this disease. Diabetes Mellitus is

derived from the Greek word “diabetes” which means “siphon” and the Latin word “mellitus”

which means “sweet” or “honeyed.” It was given this name because of the large amounts of

sugar that were found in blood and urine.

Diabetes is a group of diseases that affect the production of insulin within the body.

These diseases affect the production of insulin and cause the body to do one of three things;

produce small amounts of insulin, produce no insulin or do a combination of both. Either of these

conditions are not good for the body because they don’t allow the body to get sugar from our

blood. The sugar in our blood is known as Glucose and is necessary for our cells to work within

the body. The blood sugar in our body is one of the main sources of energy our body needs to

function. When our body does not produce insulin or is unable to extract the sugar in our blood,

sugar starts to build up causing other medical problems to manifest themselves over the course of

our lifetime.

Diabetes is divided into 4 types; gestational diabetes, prediabetes, type 1 and 2 diabetes.

Gestational diabetes is the only type of diabetes that affects women during gestation (pregnancy.)

Normally pregnant woman who are diagnosed with gestational diabetes will eventually get

diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes later in life. Prediabetes is the pre-onset of the disease and can

put the individual at a higher risk of contracting Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes. At this stage the

individual can still reverse the initial effects of the disease with changes to their lifestyle such

diet, exercise, and seeking out help for the disease from a dietitian or medical doctor. Type 1

diabetes is when your body does not produce insulin and is referred to as “insulin dependent.”

Type 2 diabetes is when your body doesn’t make enough insulin and your body has a difficult

time responding to the insulin your body does produce or taken in. Type 1 and 2 diabetes

increase the chances of complications later in life and are consistently putting you at risk for high

glucose levels which can wreak havoc on internal organs and other parts of your body.

Some if not most of the symptoms for Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes are the same and only

vary in intensity or frequency. Symptoms for Type 1 and Type 2 are: frequent urination, feeling

thirsty, losing weight, feeling hungry, blurred vision, feeling numbness in your hands and feet,

feeling tired, and a decrease ability for the body to heal quickly. Individuals with Type 1 can also

experience symptoms such as stomach pain, nausea and vomiting. With Type 2 diabetes some

symptoms go unnoticeable for years. Gestational diabetes symptoms only occur during the onset

of the disease and as with prediabetes little to no symptoms can be present making it very

difficult to diagnose. Often times doctors will use factors such as, family history, weight, race,

activity level, and dietary habits to help determine if you’re at higher risk for this disease when

symptoms go unnoticeable.

To screen for this type of disease doctors have several options to help them diagnose the

disease. Blood test can be conducted during regular annual visits to check for high blood sugar

levels and help determine if someone has Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes. The most accurate test used

by physicians is the AIC test otherwise known as HbA1c test. This type of blood test measures

what percentage of your hemoglobin is coated with sugar and goes back 3 months helping the

physician and the patient get a picture and understanding of what is going on with your blood

sugar levels and how well your managing it. The higher your A1C level is the poorer your blood

sugar control is putting you at a higher risk for contracting the disease.
When treating for Type 1 diabetes, insulin is the key; most patients take daily insulin

injections to help with the lack of insulin production in their body. Type 2 requires medication to

help your body with the use of glucose and the production. A very important factor in managing

this disease is to maintain healthy eating habits and daily exercise. Which can help individuals

with losing weight, quitting smoking and no alcohol consumption. Once you are diagnosed with

diabetes it is very important to check your blood sugar levels daily. Knowing what you can and

cannot eat, eating the correct food portions, taking your medications on a regular basis can help

you with managing this Diabetes. In some cases, making drastic lifestyle changes that effect your

social life, balance work and include daily exercise will also improve your quality of live once

diagnosed with this disease. Couple disease awareness, nutritional education and the importance

of exercise are very important factors that make managing this disease priceless.

Still, living with a disease such as this is not the end of the world. Most patient once

diagnosed and treated for Diabetes live happy and meaning full lives for years. The key is early

diagnosis, seeking medical help in the early stages, regular doctor visits to manage diabetes,

nutritional education and medication can all lead to a successful outcome. In conclusion, as a

hispanic male, diabetes is something I worry about constantly. Family history, race, diet intake

and activity level all play an important role in keeping this disease from affecting me like many

Americans affected today. Having family member and friends diagnosed with this disease I often

think that’s it’s only a matter of time before I contract the disease one day.


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