Diabetes mellitus is a very commonly known disease. Almost everyone around is aware that this disease is caused due to the presence of excess glucose in the blood due to the incapability of the pancreas to produce insulin. The two most famously known types of diabetes mellitus are the diabetes mellitus type 1, which is also known as insulin-dependent diabetes, and the diabetes mellitus type 2, which is also known as non insulin-dependent diabetes. However, some more kinds of diabetes caused due to various other reasons.
This article elucidates those lesser-known forms of diabetes mellitus. The list given below is actually a list of diabetes mellitus conditions that are caused in varying conditions of the body. Their symptoms and even treatment methods may be alike, but they differ in their causes.
Gestational diabetes is caused in women undergoing pregnancy. It is brought on by hormonal changes that occur in the bodies of women owing to prenatal conditions. Insulin secreted by the pancreas is also a hormone. An increase in the other hormones may cause a decrease in the production of insulin, which may lead to gestational diabetes.
Gestational diabetes is mostly temporary and a self-treating type of diabetes mellitus. It occurs when the woman is in her second half of pregnancy, especially in the third trimester, and continues up to childbirth. Once the birth has taken place, the symptoms of gestational diabetes reduce, and the condition automatically gets cured.
Almost all pregnant women are screened for conditions of gestational diabetes so that the condition can be detected early and precautions may be taken to prevent complications in both the woman as well as the baby. Attempts are made at controlling blood sugar level through medication and through diet.
Gestational diabetes is not very common. It affects only about 2 to 5% of all pregnant women.
Malnutrition Related Diabetes Mellitus
This is a comparatively recently classified form of diabetes mellitus. It is a form of diabetes mellitus caused due to a severe malnutrition. It is rampant in underdeveloped and developing countries like South Asian and African countries. Several people from such countries are lacking in the requisite nutrition due to poverty or ignorance about food.
Insulin is required to break down carbohydrates, especially glucose, from the food that we consume. But if the person is starving, then there is nothing that the insulin can act upon. In a way, the insulin produced by the body is ‘wasted’. The human body has a mechanism called as feedback control in which it understands what hormones are not being used, and it slowly declines their production. Due to the non-utilization of insulin, the body slowly reduces its production. As a result, malnutrition related diabetes mellitus sets in over time.
Malnutrition related diabetes mellitus can be treated with injections of insulin. There is no complete cure, but with a proper diet and insulin supplementation, the situation can be controlled to a healthy limit.
Diabetes Mellitus due to Hormonal Imbalances
Hormonal changes are one of the prime causes of diabetes mellitus of any form. This is because insulin itself is a hormone, and an increase in any other hormone will directly reduce the quantity of production of insulin. Some hormones directly affect the amount of insulin in the blood. Examples of such insulin-retarding hormones are growth hormones, thyroid hormones, pancreatic hormone glucagons, etc.
In the presence of interfering hormones, insulin’s functions are affected and diabetes mellitus sets in. However, the symptoms of diabetes mellitus related to hormonal imbalances are strictly personal and so the same techniques of treatment cannot be applied to each patient.
Pancreas Related Diabetes Mellitus
Pancreas is the root organ where diabetes mellitus originates. The insulin hormone required for the regulation of blood sugar levels is produced in the beta cells of the islets of Langerhans of the pancreas. Hence, any abnormality with the pancreas will tamper with the production of insulin, and hence, the proper utilization of sugar from the blood. The result will be diabetes mellitus.
There are many problems with the pancreas causing diabetes mellitus. Pancreas related diabetes mellitus can be caused due to infections of the pancreas, tumors in or around the pancreatic region, obstructions due to any foreign entities between the pancreas and the other organs, removal of pancreas for some reason, etc.
Pancreas related diabetes mellitus is not dependent on age. It is also not influenced by the ordinary diabetes mellitus triggering conditions such as diet, lifestyle, age, heredity, etc.
Liver Related Diabetes Mellitus
It has been found recently that liver complications can also lead to diabetes mellitus, quite akin to pancreas problems. The symptoms and treatment patterns of liver related and pancreas related diabetes mellitus run on similar lines.
Diabetes Mellitus due to External Factors
A type of diabetes mellitus can develop in people who are used to taking certain kinds of antibiotics. Toxins consumed, knowingly or unknowingly, can destroy the capacity of the pancreas in producing insulin. This results in the formation of diabetes mellitus.