Patients with type 1 DM, unless they have had a pancreatic transplant, require insulin to live; intensive therapy with insulin to limit hyperglycemia (“tight control”) is more effective than conventional therapy in preventing the progression of serious microvascular complications such as kidney and retinal diseases. Intensive therapy consists of three or more doses of insulin injected or administered by infusion pump daily, with frequent self-monitoring of blood glucose levels as well as frequent changes in therapy as a result of contacts with health care professionals. Some negative aspects of intensive therapy include a three times more frequent occurrence of severe hypoglycemia, weight gain, and an adverse effect on serum lipid levels, i.e., a rise in total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, and triglycerides and a fall in HDL cholesterol. Participation in an intensive therapy program requires a motivated patient, but it can dramatically reduce eye, nerve, and renal complications compared to conventional therapy. See: insulin pump for illus.
Metformin is generally recommended as a first line treatment for type 2 diabetes, as there is good evidence that it decreases mortality. It works by decreasing the liver's production of glucose. Several other groups of drugs, mostly given by mouth, may also decrease blood sugar in type II DM. These include agents that increase insulin release, agents that decrease absorption of sugar from the intestines, agents that make the body more sensitive to insulin, and agents that increase the excretion of glucose in the urine. When insulin is used in type 2 diabetes, a long-acting formulation is usually added initially, while continuing oral medications. Doses of insulin are then increased to effect.
The primary treatment for diabetes insipidus involves drinking enough liquid to prevent dehydration. A health care provider may refer a person with diabetes insipidus to a nephrologist—a doctor who specializes in treating kidney problems—or to an endocrinologist—a doctor who specializes in treating disorders of the hormone-producing glands. Treatment for frequent urination or constant thirst depends on the patient’s type of diabetes insipidus:
The blood vessels and blood are the highways that transport sugar from where it is either taken in (the stomach) or manufactured (in the liver) to the cells where it is used (muscles) or where it is stored (fat). Sugar cannot go into the cells by itself. The pancreas releases insulin into the blood, which serves as the helper, or the "key," that lets sugar into the cells for use as energy.
Your body uses a system of organs and hormone signals to regulate body fluids. The kidneys play an important role in this fluid regulation by removing extra fluid from your bloodstream. The bladder stores this fluid waste until you urinate it out. Your body regulates fluid levels by making less urine when you need to replace fluid lost to sweating, or by making more urine when there is too much fluid in your body.
Although support groups aren't for everyone, they can be good sources of information. Group members often know about the latest treatments and tend to share their own experiences or helpful information, such as where to find carbohydrate counts for your favorite takeout restaurant. If you're interested, your doctor may be able to recommend a group in your area.
Dietary factors also influence the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Consumption of sugar-sweetened drinks in excess is associated with an increased risk. The type of fats in the diet is also important, with saturated fat and trans fats increasing the risk and polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fat decreasing the risk. Eating lots of white rice, and other starches, also may increase the risk of diabetes. A lack of physical activity is believed to cause 7% of cases.
A person’s body regulates fluid by balancing liquid intake and removing extra fluid. Thirst usually controls a person’s rate of liquid intake, while urination removes most fluid, although people also lose fluid through sweating, breathing, or diarrhea. The hormone vasopressin, also called antidiuretic hormone, controls the fluid removal rate through urination.
In 2017, 425 million people had diabetes worldwide, up from an estimated 382 million people in 2013 and from 108 million in 1980. Accounting for the shifting age structure of the global population, the prevalence of diabetes is 8.8% among adults, nearly double the rate of 4.7% in 1980.  Type 2 makes up about 90% of the cases. Some data indicate rates are roughly equal in women and men, but male excess in diabetes has been found in many populations with higher type 2 incidence, possibly due to sex-related differences in insulin sensitivity, consequences of obesity and regional body fat deposition, and other contributing factors such as high blood pressure, tobacco smoking, and alcohol intake.
There are four types of DI, each with a different set of causes. Central DI (CDI) is due to a lack of the hormone vasopressin (antidiuretic hormone). This can be due to injury to the hypothalamus or pituitary gland or genetics. Nephrogenic DI (NDI) occurs when the kidneys do not respond properly to vasopressin. Dipsogenic DI is a result of excessive fluid intake due to damage to the hypothalamic thirst mechanism. It occurs more often in those with certain psychiatric disorders or on certain medications. Gestational DI occurs only during pregnancy. Diagnosis is often based on urine tests, blood tests and the fluid deprivation test. Diabetes mellitus is a separate condition with an unrelated mechanism, though both can result in the production of large amounts of urine.
You may still feel hungry even after you’ve had something to eat. This is because your tissues aren’t getting enough energy from the food you’ve eaten. If your body is insulin resistant or if your body doesn’t produce enough insulin, the sugar from the food may be unable to enter your tissues to provide energy. This can cause your muscles and other tissues to raise the “hunger flag” in an attempt to get you to eat more food.