Diabetes is a disease in which blood glucose levels are above normal. Patients with diabetes are either resistant to insulin or do not produce enough insulin, resulting in high blood sugar levels. Over time, high blood sugar levels can increase the risk for serious complications, including heart disease, blindness, and nerve and kidney damage. Different types of diabetes include type 1 diabetes (previously called juvenile-onset diabetes) which may account for about 5% of all diagnosed cases of diabetes; type 2 diabetes (previously called adult-onset diabetes) which accounts for 90-95% of cases; and gestational diabetes, which develops in 2% to 10% of all pregnancies but usually disappears when a pregnancy is over. Other specific types of diabetes resulting from specific genetic syndromes, surgery, drugs, malnutrition, infections, and other illnesses may account for 1% to 5% of all diagnosed cases of diabetes.
Treatments for diabetes may include diet, exercise, blood glucose monitoring, oral medication and/or insulin injections. Diabetes patients may also require specialized care from dietitians, endocrinologists, ophthalmologists, and podiatrists.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that diabetes is the seventh-leading cause of death in the U.S. CDC reports show the disease affected almost 26 million people in the U.S. in 2010, or about 8.3 percent of the population.
 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, "Basics About Diabetes" (September 6, 2012).
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