Two new high-priority recommendations in the 2018 guidelines involve preventing hypoglycemia. First, all people with diabetes who take agents that can cause hypoglycemia (ie, insulin or insulin secretagogues) should be counseled on safe driving (ie, having sugar on-hand to prevent lows). A new chapter in the 2018 guidelines (guidelines.diabetes.ca/cpg/chapter21) describes how to assess and manage private and commercial drivers, especially those who take insulin or insulin secretagogues.8 Diabetes Canada has handouts to support conversations regarding safe driving, and the guidelines feature a sample diabetes and driving educational resource to fill out with people who have diabetes (guidelines.diabetes.ca/docs/patient-resources/drive-safe-with-diabetes.pdf). Second, the guidelines recommend that medications that pose less risk of hypoglycemia should be used preferentially, especially in the elderly (ie, metformin or dipeptidyl peptidase 4 inhibitors in preference to insulin or insulin secretagogues). Likewise, risks of hypotension should be considered when managing blood pressure. As noted in the previous guideline, recommendations emphasize the safe use of medications when people with diabetes are unwell and when they are at risk of hypovolemia. Euglycemic ketoacidosis is a particular risk with sodium glucose transporter 2 inhibitors, and these should be held on sick days (ie, when patients are at risk of dehydration).17 The Diabetes Canada guidelines have an appendix to support sick-day planning (guidelines.diabetes.ca/docs/cpg/Appendix-8.pdf) and an appendix for therapeutic considerations for renal impairment (guidelines.diabetes.ca/docs/cpg/Appendix-7.pdf).8 The website also features patient resources for primary care physicians to use with their patients for sick-day management (guidelines.diabetes.ca/docs/patient-resources/stay-safe-when-you-have-diabetes-and-sick-or-at-risk-of-dehydration.pdf), as well as for hypoglycemia identification, treatment, and prevention (guidelines.diabetes.ca/docs/patient-resources/hypoglycemialow-blood-sugar-in-adults.pdf).
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The classic oral glucose tolerance test measures blood glucose levels five times over a period of three hours. Some physicians simply get a baseline blood sample followed by a sample two hours after drinking the glucose solution. In a person without diabetes, the glucose levels rise and then fall quickly. In someone with diabetes, glucose levels rise higher than normal and fail to come back down as fast.
The development of type 2 diabetes is caused by a combination of lifestyle and genetic factors. While some of these factors are under personal control, such as diet and obesity, other factors are not, such as increasing age, female gender, and genetics. Obesity is more common in women than men in many parts of Africa. A lack of sleep has been linked to type 2 diabetes. This is believed to act through its effect on metabolism. The nutritional status of a mother during fetal development may also play a role, with one proposed mechanism being that of DNA methylation. The intestinal bacteria Prevotella copri and Bacteroides vulgatus have been connected with type 2 diabetes.
Maturity onset diabetes of the young (MODY) is a rare autosomal dominant inherited form of diabetes, due to one of several single-gene mutations causing defects in insulin production. It is significantly less common than the three main types. The name of this disease refers to early hypotheses as to its nature. Being due to a defective gene, this disease varies in age at presentation and in severity according to the specific gene defect; thus there are at least 13 subtypes of MODY. People with MODY often can control it without using insulin.
Most cases of diabetes involve many genes, with each being a small contributor to an increased probability of becoming a type 2 diabetic. If one identical twin has diabetes, the chance of the other developing diabetes within his lifetime is greater than 90%, while the rate for nonidentical siblings is 25–50%. As of 2011, more than 36 genes had been found that contribute to the risk of type 2 diabetes. All of these genes together still only account for 10% of the total heritable component of the disease. The TCF7L2 allele, for example, increases the risk of developing diabetes by 1.5 times and is the greatest risk of the common genetic variants. Most of the genes linked to diabetes are involved in beta cell functions.
The guideline D&I committee co-chairs developed a process of prioritizing and distilling key messages relevant to primary care from 313 recommendations in 38 guideline chapters (Figure 1).8 The prioritization was completed anonymously by members of the guideline writing committee, people with diabetes, and members of the D&I committee. Given the large number of recommendations, the first step of the prioritization exercise was to select guideline chapters; each member was asked to select 10 chapters, then, from these chapters, to select and rank 10 recommendations. Based on the number of votes for each recommendation, a list of 22 recommendations was compiled. This was followed by thematic analysis and member checking to summarize key messages. Specifically, the co-chairs (endocrinologist C.H.Y. and FP N.M.I.) collaboratively sorted the recommendations into conceptually similar groups (themes) and drafted key messages that represented these themes. Next, they sought input from the committee members to refine the key messages, similar to the process of member checking in qualitative research.11
Conclusion High-quality diabetes care involves a series of periodic conversations about self-management and about pharmacologic and nonpharmacologic treatments that fit with each patient’s goals (ie, shared decision making). Incorporating these conversations into regular practice provides FPs with opportunities to maximize likely benefits of treatments and decrease the risk of harms, to support patients in initiating and sustaining desired lifestyle changes, and to help patients cope with the burdens of diabetes and comorbid conditions.
Within the hepatocyte, fatty acids can only be derived from de novo lipogenesis, uptake of nonesterified fatty acid and LDL, or lipolysis of intracellular triacylglycerol. The fatty acid pool may be oxidized for energy or may be combined with glycerol to form mono-, di-, and then triacylglycerols. It is possible that a lower ability to oxidize fat within the hepatocyte could be one of several susceptibility factors for the accumulation of liver fat (45). Excess diacylglycerol has a profound effect on activating protein kinase C epsilon type (PKCε), which inhibits the signaling pathway from the insulin receptor to insulin receptor substrate 1 (IRS-1), the first postreceptor step in intracellular insulin action (46). Thus, under circumstances of chronic energy excess, a raised level of intracellular diacylglycerol specifically prevents normal insulin action, and hepatic glucose production fails to be controlled (Fig. 4). High-fat feeding of rodents brings about raised levels of diacylglycerol, PKCε activation, and insulin resistance. However, if fatty acids are preferentially oxidized rather than esterified to diacylglycerol, then PKCε activation is prevented, and hepatic insulin sensitivity is maintained. The molecular specificity of this mechanism has been confirmed by use of antisense oligonucleotide to PKCε, which prevents hepatic insulin resistance despite raised diacylglycerol levels during high-fat feeding (47). In obese humans, intrahepatic diacylglycerol concentration has been shown to correlate with hepatic insulin sensitivity (48,49). Additionally, the presence of excess fatty acids promotes ceramide synthesis by esterification with sphingosine. Ceramides cause sequestration of Akt2 and activation of gluconeogenic enzymes (Fig. 4), although no relationship with in vivo insulin resistance could be demonstrated in humans (49). However, the described intracellular regulatory roles of diacylglycerol and ceramide are consistent with the in vivo observations of hepatic steatosis and control of hepatic glucose production (20,21).
^ Feinman RD, Pogozelski WK, Astrup A, Bernstein RK, Fine EJ, Westman EC, Accurso A, Frassetto L, Gower BA, McFarlane SI, Nielsen JV, Krarup T, Saslow L, Roth KS, Vernon MC, Volek JS, Wilshire GB, Dahlqvist A, Sundberg R, Childers A, Morrison K, Manninen AH, Dashti HM, Wood RJ, Wortman J, Worm N (January 2015). "Dietary carbohydrate restriction as the first approach in diabetes management: critical review and evidence base". Nutrition. 31 (1): 1–13. doi:10.1016/j.nut.2014.06.011. PMID 25287761.
In animals, diabetes is most commonly encountered in dogs and cats. Middle-aged animals are most commonly affected. Female dogs are twice as likely to be affected as males, while according to some sources, male cats are also more prone than females. In both species, all breeds may be affected, but some small dog breeds are particularly likely to develop diabetes, such as Miniature Poodles.
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