Starting with A for "ACE inhibitor" and continuing through to Y for "Yolk Sac Tumour", we give you succinct explanations for scientific and medical terms in clear and simple words.
- Diabetes mellitusalso known as sugar disease
Term for various diseases involving abnormalities in glucose metabolism which are characterised by a relative or absolute lack of the hormone insulin. Without treatment this lack of insulin leads to considerable increases in blood sugar and, depending on the severity, a variety of symptoms and conditions, as described below (see hyperglycaemia). Depending on the cause of the disease, diabetes mellitus is subdivided into type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is a disease which is a consequence of the destruction of the cells in the pancreas (beta- or B-cells) which produce insulin. The disease mostly starts in children or in youth. There are disturbances in the immune system, which are usually caused by an immune reaction against the patients own body. As a result of this, antibodies are formed which destroy pancreatic tissue, resulting in a chronic and absolute deficiency in insulin. Type 2 diabetes is a chronic and progressive disease of the pancreatic islet cells which produce insulin, resulting in a permanent increase in blood sugar. The initial cause is reduced sensitivity of the target tissue, such as muscle, for insulin, the hormone which reduces blood sugar (see insulin resistance). The increased blood sugar from lack of insulin in both type 1 and type 2 diabetes is responsible for the characteristic concomitant disease and late complications of diabetes mellitus. See type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes.
Glossary entries: Roche and Walter de Gruyter, Berlin