Diabetes Mellitus, is a chronic illness this means that it has no cure and the symptoms persist over a long period of time. This illness is a result of an imbalance of hormones, insulin, produced in the pancreas. Insulin plays an important role in how the body uses food. Insulin enables the cells in the bloodstream to absorb and use glucose for fuel. If the pancreas produces too little or no insulin or if the insulin doesn’t work properly the person may become diabetic.
Therefore, diabetics are not able to properly convert food into fuels needed by the body to function, which can seriously lead to physical consequences.
The pancreas, located behind the stomach, is a long, thin organ about the length of the hand. It is the organ that is responsible for the development of diabetes. The pancreas has two different types of cells, called alpha and beta cells, which produce insulin. Insulin is responsible for breaking down food that enters the body, turning into fuel that can be used by the body, and distributing it to the various parts of the body. The fuels needed for the body to function are known as glucose.
Glucose is sugar manufactured when the carbohydrates we eat are digested. Carbohydrates are foods that contain a large amount of sugar or starch. Bread, fruit, ice cream, and cereal are good examples of foods that are high in carbohydrates. Glucose is the main provider of energy for the majority of bodily functions. The glucose level in the blood changes in response to a person’s a daily activity, from eating a meal, to stressful situations.
Attempts to transplant part of a normal pancreas into a diabetic have not been very successful.
The operation is a difficult one and only about 40 percent of the transplanted organs are still working. One major problem is that some way has to be found to stop the digestive juices leaking out and digesting the insulin. Pancreatic transplants have mainly been attempted in patients who have kidney failure due to the diabetes. Since the pancreas lies up against one of the kidneys, it is technically possible to transplant the two organs together, simultaneously. But, this operation has only ever been attempted a few times.
A possibly more promising hope for the future is transplanting just the islet cells.
They could be injected into the abdomen without any surgery. The problem is how to stop the body from recognizing them as foreign cells and trying to destroy them. Tiny jelly-like beads have been developed to protect the islet cells from white blood cells, which would otherwise attack the islet cells and gobble them up. But, the insulin can still seep out through the beads.
Normally the level of glucose in the body rises after a person eats a meal. This rise in blood glucose stimulates the beta cells to release insulin.
Insulin then either helps body cells take up glucose to use as energy or promotes the conversation of glucose to fat, which are used by the cells later. Some glucose maybe stored in the liver this is called glycogen. Then the level of glucose drops (usually several hours after the meal has been eaten), other cells in the pancreas stimulate the conversion of glycogen to glucose and its release into the bloodstream. In this way, the level of glucose in the bloodstream stays relatively constant until the next meal is eaten.
The body tends to deal with this imbalance by filtering out excess glucose throughout the kidneys, resulting in high levels of sugar in the urine. As glucose level rises the kidneys over-whelmed and don’t function normally.
They lose their ability to absorb much water the result is frequent urination. This is commonly the earliest sign of diabetes. It is often followed by unquenchable thirst as the body tries to regain the lost fluids. It often seems that more fluid comes out than went in.
The name “diabetes mellitus” describes two striking symptoms of disease. The first part of the name, meaning a siphon or drain, seems quite appropriate.
The urine of a person with diabetes contains sugar, which is the reason for the “mellitus” part, from the Latin word for honey. Most people .