Let's D-Fine It
Here are some quick d-finitions of diabetes-related words. These words are defined in terms of diabetes so they're very focused on how it relates to diabetes. It may not give you a full and complicated definition of the word.
Ketones: An acid that is produced when your body is starving for energy. Your body starts digesting fat to try to get energy. When it digests fats, it produces
ketones. Ketones are poisonous to your body.
Ketoacidosis (AKA: DKA): When your cells don't get the energy they need from glucose, your body starts to make ketones. Ketones are bad for your body. If too many ketones build up in your body, you can get very, very sick. DKA usually happens when there is not enough insulin, not enough glucose, or when you're already sick with the cold or flu.
Lipohypertrophy: If you inject insulin in the same spot over and over again, the area can develop fatty deposits under your skin. It makes it hard for the insulin you inject to get into your system. This is called lipohypertrophy. You should rotate your insulin injection sites to prevent this.
Long-acting Insulin: AKA glargine (Lantus®) or detemir (Levemir®) is like a marathon runner – lasting the longest. This insulin starts working in 2-4 hours and can stay in the body for 24 hours with no peak. These insulins are clear and usually taken before bed.
Medical IDs: You should have a medical ID with you at all times. Medical IDs are usually worn as a bracelet or a necklace. Traditional
IDs are etched with basic, key health information about the person, and
some IDs now include compact USB drives that can carry a person’s full
medical record, such as the fact that they have diabetes and use insulin. Emergency medical personnel are trained to look for a medical ID.
Nephropathy: A complication of diabetes that damages the kidneys.
Neuropathy: A complication of diabetes that causes damage to the nerves. This can lead to amputations.
Nutritionist: A person who is an expert in food and how different foods affect your blood glucose.
Pancreas: A small organ located right behind your stomach. The pancreas is where insulin is made.
Protein: Is a source of energy for your body, but it takes twice as long as carbs for protein to become glucose. Proteins are good for building muscle. Good sources of protein are lean meats, fish, milk, nuts and some beans.
Rapid-acting Insulin: AKA lispro (Humalog®), aspart (NovoLog®), or glulisine (Apidra®) are the fastest of all insulins. Once you inject it, it starts to work in about 5 minutes and works hardest about an hour after injection. Take it right before meals. By the time your meal is digested and glucose is beginning to move into the bloodstream, rapid-acting insulin is working the hardest at moving the glucose into the cells. It's clear – like water. This is the kind of insulin that is most commonly used in insulin pumps, to cover the carbohydrates in meals, and to correct for high blood glucose.
Reservoir: The part of the insulin pump that holds your supply of insulin.
Retinopathy: A complication of diabetes that causes damage to the eyes. This can lead to blindness.
Short-acting insulin: AKA "regular" insulin is sometimes used around mealtime. It takes longer to work than rapid-acting insulin does. It is taken about 30-45 minutes before a meal and it peaks about two or three hours later. It's clear – like water.
Site Rotation: Regularly changing the site where you inject yourself with insulin to prevent lipohypertrophy.
Target Range: The range in which you and your D-Team have decided would be best to keep your blood glucose. This range may be different for everyone.
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