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Understanding Diabetes

Diabetes Symptoms 

Often diabetes goes undiagnosed because many of its symptoms seem so harmless. Recent studies indicate that early detection of diabetes symptoms and treatment can decrease the chance of developing the complications of diabetes.

Some diabetes symptoms include:

  • Frequent urination
  • Excessive thirst
  • Extreme hunger
  • Unusual weight loss
  • Increased fatigue
  • Irritability
  • Blurry vision

Risks and Complications  

Many people with diabetes are surprised when they are first diagnosed. Often they have no idea that they were even at risk for the disease. But diabetes can strike anyone and, affects one out of 10 Americans. Left untreated, it can cause many complications such as blindness, stroke, kidney failure, heart disease, limb amputation and even death.

Many people first become aware that they have diabetes when they develop one of its serious complications, such as blindness, kidney disease, nerve disease, amputations, and heart disease and stroke. But that trend may be reversing thanks to increased awareness of the disease.

Unfortunately, there are many misconceptions about who is at risk for diabetes. Contrary to popular belief, you don't have to be overweight and you don't have to be visibly unhealthy to be diagnosed with diabetes.

High-risk factors include ethnic origin, age, weight, activity level and family history. Women who have had a baby larger than nine pounds at birth also are at greater risk. But risk factors are only a guideline, and there are many people who have none of these risk factors.

For more information about Alton Memorial’s Diabetes Management Center call 618.463.7526 or email us.
Find a doctor or make an appointment: 800.392.0936
General Information: 618.463.7311
Alton Memorial Hospital
One Memorial Drive
Alton, Illinois 62002


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