Hospitals help raise diabetes awareness - Baltimore Post-ExaminerBaltimore Post-Examiner

Hospitals help raise diabetes awareness

Lanham, MD – On October 17, Doctors Community Hospital’s Joslin Diabetes Center participated in the Step Out | Walk to Stop Diabetes.  Held at the National Harbor, this American Diabetes Association event focused on raising funds to increase awareness of and find a cure for diabetes.  This year, the hospital’s team – DCH Sugar Stompers – raised an estimated $2,100 to support this cause.

Diabetes is a complex health condition that impacts the lives of both children and adults.  According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Diabetes Statistic Report, there are about 29.1 million Americans or 9.3 percent of the population who have diabetes.  Of that figure, an estimated 21 million are diagnosed and 8.1 million are undiagnosed. In addition to being among the leading causes of death in the community, poorly managed diabetes can lead to long-term complications including heart attacks, strokes, blindness, kidney failure, nerve damage and limb amputation.

“As in many parts of the country, diabetes continues to be a major health issue in Prince George’s County.  That’s what makes our support of the American Diabetes Association’s walk and other community initiatives so important.  For example, we host free diabetes educational support groups each month and have partnered with the Health Department to offer the On the Road Diabetes Program – all focused on helping people maintain or improve their health,” stated Angela Diggs, director at Doctors Community Hospital’s Joslin Diabetes Center.

Paul Grenaldo, chief operating officer at Doctors Community Hospital, elaborated, “We are committed to raising awareness about various health conditions as well as improving people’s access to care.  Our Wellness on Wheels or W.O.W. mobile health clinic, which is a partnership with the Prince George’s County Health Department, travels throughout the area providing free diabetes, cholesterol and blood pressure screenings.  Such efforts are part of the hospital’s 40-year mission of passionately caring about the health of our community.”

About Diabetes

Diabetes is a disease in which the body is unable to properly use and store glucose (a form of sugar). Glucose accumulates in the bloodstream, causing blood glucose or blood sugar levels to rise too high. There are two types of diabetes:

  • Type 1 diabetes—the body completely stops producing any insulin, a hormone that enables the body to process the glucose found in food. People who have type 1 diabetes must take daily insulin injections. This form of diabetes usually develops in children or young adults.
  • Type 2 diabetes—results when the body doesn’t produce enough insulin and/or is unable to use insulin properly (insulin resistant). This form of diabetes usually occurs in people who are ages 40 or older, overweight and have a family history of diabetes.

People who have diabetes may experience the following types of symptoms:

  • Extreme thirst
  • Frequent urination
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Increased hunger
  • Blurry vision
  • Irritability
  • Tingling numbness in hands or feet
  • Frequent skin, bladder or gum infections
  • Wounds that don’t heal
  • Extreme fatigue

Those who experience these symptoms should speak with their primary care physicians. In some cases, diabetes might not produce any symptoms or they come on so gradually that they may not be recognized, which happens occasionally with type 2 diabetes.

Poorly managed diabetes can lead to a host of long-term complications: heart attacks, strokes, blindness, kidney failure and blood vessel disease that may result in amputation or nerve damage.

For a free diabetes educational brochure or to schedule an appointment, call 301-DCH-4YOU (301-324-4968).

Free Diabetes Education and Support Group

Third Monday of the Month

6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

Doctors Community Hospital

8100 Good Luck Road

Lanham, Maryland 20706

 

For more information, call 301-DCH-4YOU (301-324-4968).


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