6521 Pharmacology

RE: Discussion – Week 5


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Discussion: Diabetes and Drug Treatments

Different types of diabetes require specialized treatment that is unique to the patient’s circumstances. Diabetes is a disease that affects the pancreas ability to produce insulin, which regulates blood glucose levels. In type one diabetes, the pancreas does not produce insulin; therefore, insulin is required to control blood glucose levels. Type one diabetes, which is also known as juvenile diabetes, is usually diagnosed at adolescents with the teen experiencing diabetic ketoacidosis.

In type two diabetes, the pancreas produces insulin, but it is either not enough to control blood glucose levels, or the body resists the insulin produced by the pancreas. Gestational diabetes is developed and diagnosis during pregnancy and resolves typically after the birth of the baby. Complications of diabetes are both short term and long term. Short term effects include hyperglycemia, hypoglycemia, diabetic ketoacidosis, and hyperosmolar hyperglycemic syndrome. Long-term effects of diabetes are often chronic changes in major organs. According to Barr, Myslinski, and Scarborough, Macrovascular disease includes stroke, myocardial infarction (MI), and peripheral arterial disease (PAD). In contrast, microvascular disease is considered to be retinopathy, renal disease, and polyneuropathy (2008).

Drugs, diet, exercise can manage type 2 diabetes, and, if needed, insulin. Metformin is an oral antidiabetic medication that is commonly prescribed for type two diabetes. Metformin can be used together with insulin in order to control blood glucose levels better. Metformin does have a side effect that includes gastrointestinal issues such as diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting. According to Moin, Schmittdiel, Flory, Yeh, Karter, Kruge. Schillinger, Mangione, Herman, and Walker, to mitigate against these side effects, the metformin dose can be titrated slowly, and routine testing of vitamin B12 can also be considered (2018).

Metformin works well when the patient is on a carbohydrate-controlled diet. The patient’s diet should include fresh fruits and vegetables, and fruit should be in limited quantities. Patients should also adopt a healthy lifestyle that includes a daily exercise regimen. According to Budge and Taylor, good self-management is associated with health and quality of life, but more strongly associated with healthy behaviors such as eating well, not overeating fatty and sugary food, exercising regularly, and planning positive things to do (2020).


Barr R, Myslinski MJ, & Scarborough P. (2008). Understanding type 2 diabetes: pathophysiology

and resulting complications. PT: Magazine of Physical Therapy, 16(2), 34–44.

Budge, C., & Taylor, M. (2020). Type 2 diabetes knowledge and self-management. Kai Tiaki

Nursing New Zealand, 26(8), 20–24.

Moin, T., Schmittdiel, J. A., Flory, J. H., Yeh, J., Karter, A. J., Kruge, L. E., Schillinger, D.,

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