Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"Is diabetes mellitus fatal?"
I am a 50 year old male who has diabetes. Just diagnosed. Could I die from this? I will do my best to treat it.
Diabetes mellitus is a condition in which blood sugar levels are not adequately controlled by the body's endocrine system. It can cause many long term health problems especially if it goes untreated, or incompletely treated. The most common problems that can occur over time is nerve damage in the feet and hands (causing pain, tingling, and numbness), foot ulcers that can require amputation, problems with eyesight, and coronary artery disease and heart attacks. Because of the increase risk of infections in the feet, and heart attacks, there is a possibility that diabetes could contribute to a fatal disease. The good news is, that with some dedication from both you and your doctor, your blood sugars can be controlled which can reduce the likelihood that you will suffer from these effects of diabetes. I suggest that you schedule frequent appointments with your primary care physician, or whoever you plan on using to help you control your diabetes. He or she can discuss in detail the monitoring that is necessary both in the doctor's office and at home. You can also discuss the methods you are trying to control your blood sugar, and additional actions such as exercise and weight loss which can be very helpful at both controlling your diabetes and reducing your risk for heart attacks. Good luck.
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