Diabetes Specialists

St. Louis Heart and Vascular -  - Cardiology

St. Louis Heart and Vascular

Bridgeton, St. Louis, Des Peres, St. Charles, MO, & Granite City, IL

As of 2015, almost 10% of the population in the United States has diabetes and 1.5 million new cases are diagnosed each year. And diabetes is a difficult to disease to manage because of its impact on your overall health, especially your heart health. At St. Louis Heart and Vascular, the team of physicians at the six locations in St. Louis, Des Peres, St. Charles, and Bridgeton, Missouri, and Granite City, Illinois, works diligently to help their patients protect their cardiovascular health in the face of diabetes. To get an expert diabetic health team in your corner, call one of the St. Louis Heart and Vascular offices for an appointment.

Diabetes Q & A

What is diabetes?

Diabetes is a catchall name for a group of diseases that affects your ability to regulate the levels of sugar, or glucose, in your blood. The most common forms of diabetes are Types 1 and 2: Of the over 30 million people with diabetes, 1.25 million have Type 1 while the remainder has Type 2.

The two different types of diabetes affect how your body produces and processes insulin, which is the hormone responsible for regulating the levels of glucose in your blood. When your insulin isn’t doing the job of clearing out the glucose, the sugar stays in your bloodstream, which can create serious problems throughout your body, especially in your neurological and cardiovascular systems.

What are the symptoms of diabetes?

The symptoms of diabetes may come and go as the glucose levels in your blood ebb and flow, but there are some signs that you should be on the lookout for, including:

  • Persistent thirst
  • Frequent urination
  • Fatigue
  • Increased hunger
  • Weight loss
  • Blurry vision
  • Sores that don’t heal well
  • Frequent infections

You are the best judge of your body, so if you’re experiencing one or more of the symptoms and they aren’t normal for you, it’s a good idea to have one of the doctors at St. Louis Heart and Vascular check you out.

How does diabetes affect heart health?

Diabetes is a serious condition because of its potential effects on your whole body, especially on your cardiovascular system. If your diabetes isn’t well-controlled, the higher levels of glucose damage your blood vessels over time, and you’re more prone to atherosclerosis, which is a narrowing of your arteries.

The changes in your blood vessels put you at higher risk for heart attack or stroke, as well as other problems due to poor circulation, especially in your extremities.

How can I protect my heart if I have diabetes?

The team at St. Louis Heart and Vascular is passionate about protecting your cardiovascular health when you have diabetes. In fact, the team is researching the effects of diabetic medicine on the heart so that they can better treat both your diabetes and your heart health without negative consequences.

After reviewing your medical history and your symptoms, your doctor sits down with you to come up with a treatment plan that addresses your health and lifestyle goals. Through vigilant monitoring, medications, and lifestyle changes, such as diet and exercise, your doctor gives you the tools necessary to lead an active life with diabetes.

If you have diabetes and would like to get expert oversight of your cardiovascular health, call one of the six locations of St. Louis Heart and Vascular for an appointment.