Measuring the Global Burden of Disease

Diabetes: Profile


The term “diabetes” refers to various conditions that are caused by problems with a hormone known as insulin (Abiola, Sathyapalan, & Hepburn, 2016). The two types of diabetes include:

  • Type 2 diabetes: The body’s ability to process glucose is affected.
  • Type 1 diabetes: The pancreas produces little (or no) insulin.

Risk Factors

  • Overweight/obesity
  • Insulin resistance
  • Sedentary lifestyle
  • Family history/genes
  • Affected glucose tolerance

Signs and Symptoms

  • Blurred vision
  • Wounds/cuts taking longer to heal
  • Tiredness
  • Genital itching
  • Frequent urination


The possible complications of diabetes include hearing impairment, skin conditions, kidney damage, cardiovascular disease, vision loss, diabetic coma, hypoglycemia, limp amputation, and Alzheimer’s disease.

Medications and Management

Insulin therapy is appropriate for persons with diabetes. The common drugs used to manage the condition include Metformin, Thiazolidinediones, Meglitinides, and Sulfonylureas. Weight loss surgery (or bariatric surgery) can be used to manage blood sugar levels (Evert et al., 2014). The management of the condition can be realized using various initiatives such as regular exercises, insulin therapy, and healthy eating.


Diabetes affects over 170 million people across the globe. Around 40 percent of such people with diabetes are below 20 years of age (Abiola et al., 2016). The number of patients is expected to reach 300 million by the year 2025 (World Health Organization, 2017).

Mortality and Morbidity

Statistics indicate that around 32 percent of people die from diseases related to diabetes (World Health Organization, 2017). Around 24/100,000 deaths are caused by diabetes (Abiola et al., 2016). In terms of morbidity, 13 percent of adults across the globe were diagnosed with diabetes from 2013 to 2017 (World Health Organization, 2017).

Health Systems Performance

There are various systems implemented to deal with this condition. Some of them include the National Committee on Quality Assurance’s Diabetes Quality Improvement Program and the National Institute of Diabetes. These systems are implemented to monitor the prevalence of the condition and offer adequate medical support.

Sources for Trusted Background Information

The most authentic sources of background information for diabetes include the World Health Organization (WHO), the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH), and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). These organizations provide regular, timely, and easy-to-read documents about various diseases such as diabetes. These sources offer useful insights about the preventative methods, treatments, symptoms, and diagnostic techniques for diabetes.

Sources for Good Statistical Information

Community members should identify the best sources of statistical information in order to understand the major illnesses affecting them. The WHO publishes numerous reports every year. For example, the World Health Statistics (WHS) report is a good source of authentic statistical information about the number of people affected by diabetes across the globe (World Health Organization, 2017). Different agencies supported by the United Nations (UN) also offer quality global health statistics. The WHO’s Weekly Epidemiological Records can be used to learn more about the number of patients affected by diabetes every year.

Academic Publications

There are several academic publications presented every year. The findings and statistics presented in such publications can be used to update this profile. The information can ensure emerging management techniques, medications, and therapies are embraced to ensure diabetic patients lead healthy lifestyles (Abiola et al., 2016). Such publications can also be studied to ensure that new findings about diabetes are included in the profile. These developments can ensure the updated profile supports the health needs of many patients.


Abiola, D., Sathyapalan, T., & Hepburn, D. (2016). Management of type 1 and type 2 diabetes requiring insulin. Prescriber, 27(9), 50-57.

Evert, A. B., Boucher, J. L., Cypress, M., Dunbar, S. A., Franz, M. J., Mayer-Davis, E. J., … Yancy, W. S. (2014). Nutrition therapy recommendations for the management adults with diabetes. Diabetes Care, 37(1), s120-s143. Web.

World Health Organization. (2017). Web.

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