When you have uncontrolled diabetes, you're at greater risk for several health problems. These problems can affect major organs and organ systems, such as the heart and blood vessels, kidneys, lungs, pancreas, digestive system, and brain. Diabetes can also affect other parts of the body, such as the digestive system, skin, sexual organs, teeth and gums, and the immune system. Eye problems (retinopathy).
Some people with diabetes develop an eye disease called diabetic retinopathy that can affect their vision. If retinopathy is detected (usually through an eye screening test), vision loss can be treated and prevented. Foot problems Diabetes Foot problems are serious and can result in amputation if left untreated. Nerve damage can affect foot sensation, and increased blood sugar can damage circulation, slowing the healing of sores and cuts.
That's why it's important to tell your family doctor if you notice any changes in the way your feet look or feel. Family members of people with type 1 diabetes are sometimes tested for the presence of diabetic immune system cells (autoantibodies). Because type 1 is an immune system disease, immunotherapy holds promise as a way to use drugs to turn off the parts of the immune system that cause type 1 disease. If you have type 1 diabetes, your immune system attacks itself and can also cause a hair loss condition called alopecia areata.
While complications can be very varied and affect many organ systems, there are many basic principles of prevention that are shared in common.