Health Risks of Diabetes
Approximately 15.7 million people in the United States have diabetes. One third of these are undiagnosed. Diabetes is a disease which prevents the body from producing insulin in quantities that are either enough or not at all. Diabetes is usually diagnosed by identifying elevated blood glucose levels.
Risks Associated with Diabetes
Diabetes can cause many different disabling and even life-threatening conditions.
Some of the complications associated with diabetes include heart disease. Heart disease deaths associated with diabetes total 80,000 per year. Between 12,000 and 24,000 cases of blindness are caused by diabetes each year, and 12,000 cases of renal failure are linked to diabetes each year.
Diabetes can also lead to poor circulation and reduced nerve sensation, particularly in the lower extremities. This can cause injury and infection which in turn leads to 67,000 lower extremity amputations each year. Over 60% of those with diabetes have high blood pressure. And 60%-70% have mild to severe damage to the nervous system.
For more information on diabetes check the following references:
CDC's Diabetes and Public Health Resource
Disbetes Mellitus: A Guide for Consumers and Researchers
American Diabetes Association