Diabetes is a very common condition. It causes symptoms of thirst, tiredness, excessive passage of urine and weight loss.
Diabetes is a condition in which the level of blood glucose (sugar) rises. If this is not controlled in the long term, a person with diabetes may develop complications. These diabetic complications include damage to the eyes, feet, kidneys and circulation. If not treated in time, diabetes can cause blindness, kidney failure, heart attack and stroke. Foot complications can lead to ulcers, gangrene and amputation. However, with careful treatment and supervision, these complications can be avoided.
Diabetes is usually treated with diet and exercise together with tablets and insulin if necessary.
The aim of the treatment is to promote and maintain good health, alleviate any symptoms, detect any complications at an early stage and treat them effectively.
Newly diagnosed patients require a full assessment by a specialist, together with education about how to live with diabetes in the long term.
This is defined as a partial or complete inability to achieve or maintain an erection of the penis sufficient for vaginal penetration and the satisfactory completion of intercourse.
This is a very common condition, which tends to affect many men as they get older, even if they are otherwise in apparent good health. However, erectile dysfunction is also a feature of many medical conditions. About 50% of diabetic men will have some degree of erectile dysfunction. It also occurs in men with the following conditions:
- Hypertension (high blood pressure)
- Heart disease
- Peripheral vascular disease (hardening of the arteries)
- Associated with the use of various medical drugs, e.g. diuretics and beta blockers
- Cigarette smokers
- Hyperlipidaemia (high cholesterol levels)
- Multiple sclerosis
- Parkinson's disease
- Back conditions and injuries
- Pelvic surgery and injuries
Erectile dysfunction can be treated by various tablets, prostaglandin hormone therapy and by vacuum pump therapy. Treatments currently used include:
- Caverject dual chamber injections
- Vacuum devices
Some men may also have a lack of male hormones (testosterone) which may require hormone replacement therapy.
Most men with erectile dysfunction can be very successfully treated.
This term is applied to those conditions treated by a generalist consultant physician. A patient would be referred to a general physician for a diagnosis, when this is not readily apparent. Examples include complaints of tiredness, weight loss, feeling generally unwell or any other non-specific symptoms. The approach to diagnosis in such a case is to start with a thorough unhurried history, followed by a careful physical examination, then finally, blood tests or X-rays as required. Once a specific diagnosis has been reached, then appropriate treatment can be started, progressing to a cure or improvement in the patient's condition.