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Rhode Island Medicine

Internal Medicine located in Woonsocket, RI & Pawtucket, RI

Diabetes is a lifelong condition that requires expert management to prevent worsening or the development of complications. Skilled internist Irfan Ahmad, MD, of Rhode Island Medicine offers high-quality diabetes care and management at his offices in Woonsocket and Pawtucket, Rhode Island. Get the screenings, medication management, and glucose monitoring you need to live a healthy, long life with diabetes. Call today or use the online tool to schedule an appointment.

Diabetes Q & A

When should I seek care for diabetes?

Every person who is diagnosed with diabetes or who suspects they may have it should have a trusted medical provider overseeing their care. Diabetes is a chronic condition that affects your metabolism and influences how your body stores and uses glucose, or blood sugar.

If you have diabetes, you have an impaired ability to produce or use the hormone insulin and, as a result, cannot effectively send sugar to your cells for energy or storage. 

Your blood sugar levels remain chronically high, resulting in damage to blood vessels and internal organs. 

Diabetes isn’t just one condition. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune condition in which the body attacks cells in the pancreas that produce insulin. Type 1 diabetes is usually diagnosed at an early age.

Type 2 diabetes usually starts to show up in middle age or older age. It’s characterized by the inability of your body to produce enough insulin or to use the insulin you do produce effectively. 

Prior to the onset of type 2 diabetes, you may be diagnosed with prediabetes. This condition is characterized by elevated blood sugar levels that aren’t quite high enough yet to qualify as full-blown diabetes. Without intervention, however, prediabetes is likely to develop into type 2 diabetes and threaten your long-term health.

What are the symptoms of diabetes?

Type 2 diabetes and prediabetes don’t always cause symptoms. 

When symptoms do arise, they usually indicate type 1 diabetes, and may include:

  • Increased hunger and thirst
  • Frequent urination
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Unexplained weight gain or loss
  • Blurry vision
  • Tingling in your hands and feet

These symptoms often come on quickly and if you experience them, you should make an appointment to come in to Rhode Island Medicine right away.

Who is at risk of developing diabetes?

Diabetes has a strong genetic link and as you get older, your risk of developing type 2 diabetes increases. Other risk factors include:

  • Being classified as overweight or obese
  • Leading a sedentary lifestyle
  • Eating a poor diet

If you have these risk factors, the team at Rhode Island Medicine may recommend you undergo a simple blood sugar test as part of your routine physical to check for the condition. Early intervention leads to better treatment and management.

How is diabetes managed?

Diabetes cannot be cured, but it can be successfully managed. Your care may include daily insulin therapy, lifestyle and dietary changes, and medications to normalize blood sugar levels. 

Set up your diabetes evaluation at Rhode Island Medicine today by calling the office or through the online tool.