Diabetes

Alkeshkumar Patel, MD -  - Internist

Citrus Medical Clinic

Alkeshkumar Patel, MD

Internist & Primary Care Physician located in Chandler, AZ & Safford, AZ

More than 9% of Americans have diabetes, and another 8 million people are at risk for developing type 2 diabetes. Dr. Alkeshkumar Patel provides expert diabetes management to maintain optimal health in patients who have been diagnosed with diabetes. He can also help you prevent diabetes with a plan to lower your risks. To receive customized diabetic care, call his practice, Citrus Medical Clinic in Chandler and Stafford, Arizona, or book an appointment online.

Diabetes Q & A

What is the difference between type 1 and type 2 diabetes?

Your pancreas produces insulin, which is responsible for keeping blood sugar at a normal and healthy level.  Type 1 and type 2 diabetes both develop from problems with insulin:

Type 1 diabetes

This type of diabetes is caused by an autoimmune disorder that damages the pancreas. As a result, it can’t produce insulin.  

Type 2 diabetes

When you have type 2 diabetes, your pancreas works, but it doesn’t produce enough insulin. People with type 2 diabetes also have insulin resistance, which means they can’t use the insulin being produced. About 90-95% of all people diagnosed with diabetes have type 2 diabetes.

Are you at risk for type 2 diabetes?

You can’t prevent type 1 diabetes, but nine out of 10 cases of type 2 diabetes could be avoided by changing the lifestyle factors that raise your risk, which includes:

  • Overweight and obesity
  • High blood pressure
  • Lack of exercise
  • Cigarette smoking

What symptoms are caused by diabetes?

Type 1 and type 2 diabetes have similar symptoms, but their onset is different. They develop suddenly in patients with type 1 diabetes and slowly in those with type 2 diabetes, typically building over many years. Symptoms include:

  • Increased thirst
  • Frequent urination
  • Blurry vision
  • Increased hunger
  • Fatigue
  • Unexplained weight loss

How is diabetes managed?

The goal of diabetes management is to maintain normal blood sugar levels. It’s important to follow your treatment and keep blood sugar steady to prevent serious complications. High blood sugar damages small blood vessels and nerves, causing:

  • Heart disease
  • Kidney disease
  • Loss of vision
  • Peripheral nerve damage

Dr. Patel works with you to develop a diabetes management plan that may include:

Dietary and lifestyle changes

You’ll learn about developing a menu that restricts the types of carbohydrates that spike blood sugar. If you’re overweight, diabetes education also includes information about controlling calories to lose weight and tips for staying active. Exercise doesn’t just improve your health and help you lose weight, it also lowers blood sugar and may increase your ability to use insulin.

Medication

Patients with type 1 diabetes must take insulin. Those with type 2 diabetes may not need medication if they can keep blood sugar managed with diet and exercise. Otherwise, you may need insulin or one of the other prescription medications that lower blood sugar.