Diabetes is a serious disease which, if not properly managed, can lead to complications affecting every aspect of your health and overall quality of life. At the office of North Jersey Pulmonary Associates, we understand the link between Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes and lung health and how this metabolic disorder can affect the onset, severity, and progression of lung disease.
Diabetes represents one of the most challenging public health problems of the 21st century. According to the latest fact sheet issued by the American Diabetes Association, in the United States alone, close to 30 million adults and children have diabetes.
With diabetes, the excess sugar in the bloodstream can lead to several long-term complications. This long list includes the development of heart disease, stroke, kidney disease, eye problems, nerve impairment, infections, and difficulty with wound healing. Studies demonstrate, the respiratory system is no exception.
Diabetes may increase one’s risk for several debilitating conditions affecting lung health and respiratory function, including:
It’s also worth noting the onset of diabetes can affect the progression of chronic lung diseases, causing worsening symptoms and even a higher mortality risk in people with conditions like COPD and asthma. While the exact mechanisms of how diabetes affects the lungs require further exploration, it’s believed diabetes exacerbates the existing lung inflammation while having a damaging effect on the lung’s microvasculature and compromising the immune response.
Getting the care that’s needed
Because diabetes and lung disease represent such a challenging combination, it’s essential to see a specialist tomonitor and examine your lung capabilities— performing pulmonary function tests and other diagnostic testing as indicated. Treatment involves an individualized and integrated approach to care, including blood sugar control, weight management, medication, quitting smoking, diet and lifestyle modifications, exercise, and follow-up care.
As skilled and experienced specialists, the professional team at the office of North Jersey Pulmonary Associates is well-equipped to help. We provide the expert care required to address the complex issues affecting lung health and respiratory function, helping our patients breathe easier while protecting their quality of life.
By North Jersey Pulmonary Associates
November 9, 2023