Here is a list of common terms every diabetic person should know be it T1, T2 or Prediabetics. Let us know if there is anything else that needs to be added.
A1C is a type of hemoglobin formed by attachment of glucose to the hemoglobin. A1C test is a test which measures how much of your hemoglobin has got attached to glucose and reflects the level of blood glucose in a person over the past 3 months.
It is a condition seen in people suffering from pre-diabetes or Type 2 diabetes, which is characterized by patches of dark, velvety skin on the folds of the skin or in the armpits, groin, neck, elbows, knees, knuckles, lips, palms and soles of the feet.
It is one of the oral medications used in the treatment of Type 2 diabetes. It works by blocking the enzymes that digest starch in the food.
ACE is an abbreviation for angiotensin converting enzyme. It is an oral medication that is mainly used to decrease blood pressure; however, it can be used to decrease kidney damage in diabetic patients.
It is the opposite of chronic, and it is used to describe something that happens for a short time and suddenly.
It is a term used to describe Type 2 diabetes – which typically starts in adults, although today there are an increasing number of children who get this disorder.
Albumin is a type of protein, and albuminuria is a condition in which there is a large amount of albumin in the urine. It is usually a sign of kidney damage.
These are a type of cell in the pancreas that produce the hormone glucagon. Glucagon is released when the blood level of glucose is very low.
It is a condition where there are low numbers of red blood cells, which results in decreased oxygenation of the body cells.
It refers to disease of the blood vessels like arteries, veins or capillaries. Lymphangiopathy is the disease of lymphatic vessels.
These are proteins synthesized by the body to protect it from bacteria and viruses and any protein that the body considers to be foreign. In Type 1 diabetes, the body mistakenly synthesizes antibodies against insulin producing pancreas cells leading to their destruction.
It stands for angiotensin receptor blocker, which is an oral medication used to decrease blood pressure.
A condition of the blood vessels characterized by hardening of the arteries.
The large blood vessels that carry the blood from the heart to the body are called arteries.
It is an artificial sweetener that has almost no nutritional value and no calories.
It is the condition of narrowing and hardening of the blood vessels in the body, which may lead to serious complications such as a stroke or a heart attack.
It is a disease caused by the faulty functioning of the immune system of the body. The immune system attacks some part of the body causing the condition.
Beta cells are cells of the pancreas and they responsible for the synthesis of insulin that regulates glucose levels in the blood.
One of the oral medications used in the treatment of Type2 diabetes.
Glucose is the main sugar found in the blood and is a source of energy for the body.
Blood glucose level
The amount or the level of glucose in a certain amount of blood.
Blood glucose meter
It is a device used mainly by diabetic patients in order to measure the level of blood glucose regularly.
Blood glucose monitoring
The process of measuring and checking blood levels of glucose regularly in order to manage diabetes.
Blood vessels are the tubes that carry blood from the heart to the body and back to the heart.
Body mass index (BMI)
It is a measurement used to check a person’s weight compared to his/her height in order to check for obesity.
It is a term used to describe impaired glucose tolerance or early stages of Type2 diabetes.
It is a short peptide (made of 31 amino acids) that connects the two insulin chains of the proinsulin molecule, a precursor of insulin. The C-peptide test is used as a measurement to know how much insulin the pancreas releases and can distinguish between type 1 and type 2 diabetes.
The smallest blood vessels in the body.
A doctor who specializes in the management of patients suffering from heart problems.
A disease that affects the cardiovascular system such as the heart or the blood vessels.
A condition that affects the eye resulting in clouding of the eye’s lens and causes impaired vision.
A diseases or a condition that is characterized by damage to the blood vessels of the brain.
It is a condition that results from nerve damage leading to damage to the soft tissue and joints of the foot.
It is the opposite of acute, and it is used to describe a condition that last for longer times.
A state or a condition in which the person is not conscious, cannot be awakened, does not respond normally to stimuli like pain or light or sound, does not have normal sleep-wake cycles and cannot perform any action voluntarily.
Combination oral medicines
A pill that includes different types of medications.
The use of different types of treatment and management in order to manage patients with Type2 diabetes.
Harmful effects that may result from a certain disease or condition. In the case of diabetes, there are many complications that may affect the heart, the blood vessels, the nervous system, the kidneys, and the eyes.
Coronary heart disease
A disease or a condition affecting the coronary vessels that supply the heart.
The loss of large amounts of fluids from the body by not drinking enough water, or through sweating, urination, vomiting, or diarrhea.
A condition or a disease that is affecting the skin.
Dextrose, also called glucose
It is a sugar that is the main source of energy of the body.
A condition that is characterized by symptoms similar to those seen in diabetes mellitus including excessive thirst, weakness, and heavy urination, but the blood glucose levels are normal.
A condition characterized by high levels of glucose in the blood. There are two types of diabetes mellitus depending on whether beta cells in the pancreas are functional or not.
Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA)
A condition that usually affects patients suffering from Type 1 diabetes mellitus (but can occur in Type 2 diabetes mellitus as well) which results in very high levels of glucose in the blood, lack of insulin, and the presence of ketones in the urine and blood.
It is a rare condition that affects the breasts of patients suffering from type 1 diabetes where there are lesions in the breast tissue.
A condition that is characterized by damage to the spinal cord which affects patients suffering from diabetes.
Damage to the tiny blood vessels in the retina in diabetic patients.
Something that causes diabetes.
A doctor who specializes in the management of patients suffering from diabetes.
Swelling in some parts of the body as a result of fluid accumulation.
An endocrine gland is a group of specialized cells that are responsible for the release of some hormones.
A doctor who specializes in the management of patients who have problems with their endocrine glands.
A protein that performs or aids a chemical reaction.
The state in which the glucose levels in the blood are normal.
Fasting blood glucose test
A test used to measure the blood glucose level in a person after fasting for 8 to 12 hours.
Mainly a plant sugar, naturally found in fruits and honey.
It is a condition that is characterized by the death of part of the body tissue as a result of the lack of blood supply.
A type of neuropathy affecting the stomach. It involves the paralysis of muscles of the stomach leading to improper emptying of food from the stomach.
Gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM)
A type diabetes of mellitus which develops in women during pregnancy.
A condition of the gums that may also affect patients suffering from diabetes. which is characterized by inflammation and bleeding of the gums.
A condition that is characterized by increased pressure in the eye leading to damage.
It is an oral medication belonging to the class “sulphonylureas” that stimulate the production of insulin by the pancreas in a glucose-independent manner. It is used in the treatment of Type 2 diabetes.
It is an oral medication used in the treatment of Type 2 diabetes, which helps the pancreas release more insulin and decreases the level of sugar in the blood. It belongs to the “sulphonylurea” class of oral diabetic medications.
Glomerular filtration rate
It is a measurement used to measure the kidneys’ ability to filter urine and remove waste products.
It is a hormone released by the alpha cells of the pancreas which increases the blood glucose levels by causing liver to convert stored glycogen to glucose.
It is a combination drug consisting of of metformin and glyburide which is used in the management of Type 2 diabetes.
It is an oral drug of class sulphonylurea and is used in the management of Type 2 diabetes. It decreases the levels of glucose in the blood by helping the pancreas release more insulin.
It is the form of glucose sugar found in the muscles and the liver.
A condition characterized by the presence of glucose in the urine.
When a condition or a trait is passed from a parent to a child.
It is a phase of remission that some patients suffering from Type 1 diabetes have. During this period, the pancreas releases some insulin; however, this phase is temporary.
It is a chemical that is released by the body in order to regulate some functions or to trigger some actions in the body.
The state of increased blood glucose levels.
A condition that is characterized by high levels of insulin in the blood.
A state characterized by increased levels of cholesterol and fats in the blood.
Hyperosmolar hyperglycemic nonketotic syndrome (HHNS)
An emergency condition characterized by very high levels of blood glucose with no ketones in the urine or blood.
A condition in which the blood pressure is higher than normal.
A condition characterized by low levels of glucose in the blood.
When the patient does not recognize the symptoms of hypoglycemia, this state is called hypoglycemia unawareness.
Blood pressure lower than normal.
Insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus
A term used to describe Type 1 diabetes mellitus.
A medication or a drug that suppresses the immune system of the body.
Impaired fasting glucose (IFG)
When the result of fasting blood glucose test is higher than normal but it is not high enough to confirm the diagnosis of diabetes mellitus.
Implantable insulin pump
A small insulin pump that can be implanted inside the body of diabetic patients.
Inability to maintain an erection during sexual activity.
A hormone secreted by the pancreas that helps in the control of blood glucose levels.
A device that has a pen-like shape which is used by diabetic patients to inject themselves with insulin.
A device that pumps insulin to the blood continuously at a basal level and/or whenever needed.
Lipid is another term for natural fats.
A blood test that is used to measure the blood levels of fats like triglycerides, HDL cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, and total cholesterol.
It is an oral drug of the class “biguanides” used in the management of Type 2 diabetes. It works by lowering the amount of glucose produced by the liver and enhances the body response to insulin.
A condition characterized by damage to the kidneys.
A condition or a disease that affects the nervous system.
An organ in the body which secretes digestion enzymes and insulin.
The condition of excessive urination which could be a sign of diabetes.
It means that there are proteins in the urine which could be an indicator for damage of the kidneys.
One of the oral drugs of the class “meglinitides” used in the treatment of Type 2 diabetes. It works by increasing the insulin secreted from the pancreas after meals.
When diabetes develops as a result of another condition or drug, it is called secondary diabetes.
A group of oral drugs used in the treatment of Type 2 diabetes. These work by increasing the insulin secreted by the pancreas and making it more useful to the body.
A group of oral drugs used in the treatment of Type 2 diabetes which work by making the cells more sensitive to insulin resulting in the movement of glucose into cells.
Type 1 diabetes
A condition that usually develops in young patients. It is characterised by increased levels of blood glucose due to the lack of insulin. It is considered an autoimmune disease meaning that the body’s immune system attacks the pancreas and destroys the cells responsible for the secretion of insulin.
Type 2 diabetes
It is a condition that usually develops in middle-aged or older patient. It is characterized by high levels of blood glucose because of either the lack of insulin or the body’s inability to use the available insulin.
- Diabetes Common Terms. American Diabetes Association. http://www.diabetes.org/diabetes-basics/common-terms/. Edited April 07, 2014. Accessed May 06, 2016.
- Lynn Yoffee. A Glossary of Key Diabetes Terms. everyday HEALTH. http://www.everydayhealth.com/diabetes/glossary-of-diabetes-terms.aspx. Updated March 11, 2009. Accessed May 06, 2016.
- Glossary of Diabetes Terms. WebMD. http://www.webmd.com/diabetes/guide/diabetes-glossary-terms. Accessed May 06, 2016.
- Glossary of diabetes. Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Glossary_of_diabetes. Accessed May 06, 2016.