Diagnosis of Diabetes



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Chapter 2 : Diagnosis and Symptoms



How are Diabetes and Pre-Diabetes Diagnosed? arrow_upward


  • The following tests are used for diagnosis:
    • A fasting plasma glucose (FPG) test: measures blood glucose in a person who has not eaten anything for at least 8 hours.
    • An oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT): measures blood glucose after a person fasts at least 8 hours and 2 hours after the person drinks a glucose-containing beverage.
    • A random plasma glucose test: measures blood glucose without regard to when the person being tested last ate. This test is not used to diagnose pre-diabetes.

    Diagnosis arrow_upward


  • Fasting plasma glucose
    • Healthy = under 100 mg/dl
    • Pre-diabetes = 100-125 mg/dl
    • Diabetes = 125 or higher mg/dl

    To confirm diabetes arrow_upward


  • Person must have symptoms of diabetes
    • Random plasma glucose >200 mg/dl
    • Fasting blood glucose of >126 mg/dl
    • 2-hour plasma glucose >200 mg/dl on oral glucose tolerance test

    Symptoms of diabetes arrow_upward


  • Increased fatigue:
    • Due to inefficiency of the cell to metabolize glucose, reserve fat of body is metabolized to gain energy
    • When fat is broken down in the body, it uses more energy as compared to glucose, which results in fatigue

  • Polydipsia: As the concentration of glucose increases in the blood, brain receives signal for diluting it and, in its counteraction one feels thirsty.
  • Polyuria:
    • Increase in urine production is due to excess glucose present in body
    • Body gets rid of the extra sugar in the blood by excreting it through urine
    • This leads to dehydration because along with the sugar, a large amount of water is excreted out of the body
  • Polyphagia: In order to cope up with high sugar levels in blood, body produces insulin which leads to increased hunger
  • Weight fluctuation: Weight loss: due to factors like loss of water (polyuria), metabolism of body fat and protein. Weight gain: due to increased appetite
  • Blurry vision: When body fluid is pulled out of tissues including lenses of the eye, which affects its ability to focus, results in blurry vision
  • Irritability: The inefficient glucose supply to the brain and other body organs makes one feel tired and uneasy.
  • Infections: Whenever there is fluctuation in blood sugar (due to suppression of immune system) skin infections like fungal or bacterial or UTI (urinary tract infection) are prevalent.
  • Poor wound healing:
    • High blood sugar resists the flourishing of WBC (white blood cells) which are responsible for body immune system
    • When these cells do not function accordingly, healing of wound is not proper.


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