The day you are diagnosed as a diabetic is the day that will forever change your life.  From this day until the day you meet your Maker, Diabetes will be your constant companion.  In this day of high speed internet and Mars rovers, no cure for this dreaded disease has been found.  And nope, despite all the hype, Stem Cell Therapy is just not there yet.  Please, don’t get me started on those cure-all, “all-natural” herbal remedies.

 

The good news is, while Diabetes has the potential to cripple or even kill you with its many dreaded complications, the latest advances in its management has made living with this diseases, well, more livable.  I’ll tell you how.

 

 

Insulin is the hormone involved in diabetes.  It is one of the major hormones that regulate blood sugar levels.  When these levels fall after a few hours of not eating anything, your cells send the signal to your brain that you are hungry.  Because of this, you grab something to eat, raising your blood sugar levels.  When this happens, your body will increase the levels of insulin in your blood.  It attaches itself to receptors in your hungry cells, telling them to let the sugar (glucose) enter your cells.  Glucose enters your cells, they stop sending hunger signals to your brain, you feel… full.  Satisfied.   Everybody happy.

 

The problem in Type II diabetes is that these Insulin receptors attached to your cell membranes do not work very well.  Despite contact with the Insulin molecule, it cannot allow glucose to enter the cells.  Because of this, the cells keep on telling your brain that you are hungry while glucose is prevented from entering them.  This leads you to keep on eating, craving sugary foods and drinks.  Meanwhile, because glucose cannot enter the cells, their levels in the blood keep on increasing.

 

Glucose is good, but at high levels, this can cause the complications of diabetes.  Left uncontrolled, it will damage your nerves, leading to numbness (Neuropathy), blindness (Retinopathy, Cataracts), and even weakness.  It will also damage your blood vessels, leading to poor blood flow (Stroke, Heart Attack, Diabetic Foot, etc).  Oh yes, it will also damage your kidneys.  And your immune system.  And your..  let’s just say it’s pretty nasty.

 

Because of this, once you are diagnosed with diabetes, it is very important that you control your blood sugar levels.  Depending on the severity of your diabetes, your doctor will set targets for you to maintain.  Unlike in years past, this time, you cannot go on a diet a week before going to your doctor and getting away with past binges.  We have tests that can catch that.

 

Here at Villanueva Clinical Laboratory, we make life easier for you.  We have a friendly staff, lots of parking, and above all, a Diabetes Maintenance Panel.  This panel consists of the following tests:

 

1. Serum Fasting Blood Sugar – Although you have your very efficient household Glucometer, nothing beats the Industrial-Grade Chemistry Machine that we have in terms of accuracy.  No matter how accurate your glucometer claims it is, on average, there is a 20% difference in result compared to the long method (which is a misnomer, because the method is not very long – it is, after all, fully automated).

 

2. Human Glycated Hemoglobin (HbA1C) – This test will tell the doctor if you have been naughty or nice.  Glucose attaches itself to hemoglobin found in your red blood cells.  High levels of this sweetened hemoglobin means that you have not been very nice for the past 3 months.

 

3. Serum Creatinine – Creatinine is a normal product of muscle metabolism and is cleared from the body by the kidneys.  Failure of the kidneys to clear this leads to higher serum levels of this substance.  It also means that something is wrong with your kidneys. Tsk, tsk..

 

4. Micral Test – This test detects low levels of albumin, the main protein circulating in the serum, in the urine.  A positive test alerts your doctor to the early signs of kidney damage, at a stage where its life can still be, well, prolonged.

 

5. Urinalysis – This test checks your urine for other substances that can help your doctor adequately assess your state of well-being.  Glucose in urine?  That’s overflow glucosuria, meaning your serum glucose levels are through the roof.  Leukocytes?  High levels of protein and signs of infection are also seen here.

 

We make living with diabetes easier for you.  All you have to do is fast for 8 hours, show up at Villanueva Clinical Laboratory, and we’ll take it from there.  After your blood sample has been taken, you can try our tasty coffee at the vending machine (your choice of Cappuccino, Choco chino and Filipino Blend) to keep yourself from fainting.
Cheers!