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"If I have diabetes type 2 do I have to take insulin shots?"
I'm 24 and was just diagnosed with diabetes. Does this mean shots?
Diabetes Mellitus (DM) is a chronic condition in which glucose is not metabolized correctly and results in hyperglycemia (high blood sugar levels). A new diagnosis can be anxiety filled and worrisome, but it is a condition which is very manageable. Both your primary care physician and endocrinologist can help manage and discuss your diabetes. Type 2 DM is the most common form of diabetes and is due to a combination of both insulin deficiency (pancreatic beta cells not making enough insulin) and insulin resistance. It is highly related to excess weight and obesity. Insulin is a hormone that is made and secreted by pancreatic beta cells and is essential in the metabolism of glucose. Without insulin, glucose cannot be used by the body and builds up in the the blood, thus leading to high blood sugar levels. Because there is not an absolute insulin deficiency (as there is in Type 1 DM), often patients with Type 2 can use oral hypoglycemic medications instead of requiring injected insulin therapy. However, many patients lose their pancreatic cell function in the long term and require insulin therapy. There are many different oral medication classes and insulin therapy regimens and you can discuss the differences with your physicians. There is a significant amount of ongoing research about diabetes mellitus and new treatments. You should follow up with your primary care physician and discuss diabetes management and possible complications. An endocrinology consult should also be considered.
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