Analysis Diabetes I And Ii

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JS Hirsch (2006) in his history of diabetes mellitus I and II notes that in the centuries when this disease was poorly understood, it was known by doctors as the "pissing evil" (26). Hirsch quotes the medical hypothesis of a Greek doctor in the first century, who described a patient's death from diabetes as "the melting down of flesh and limbs into urine" (26). In fact, the formal scientific name for the disease still reflects this antiquated view of its operation, as Hirsch notes that "the Greek prefix 'dia' means 'to pass through', while 'betes' is 'tube', so 'diabetes' means 'water siphon'. 'Mellitus' is 'sweetened with honey'." (26). These slightly bizarre details are a good way of indicating the most noticeable outward symptoms of advanced diabetes. As Hirsch describes it, "diabetes's signature symptom was polyuria, excessive urine: when blood sugar levels rise, the body draws water from its tissues to purge the sugar through its urine" (27). This is, therefore, the most basic operation of the disease, and its two tell-tale symptoms for doctor and patient alike before the twentieth century: frequent and excessive urination, where the urine has a sweet smell and taste, like honey. These symptoms are still used to diagnose diabetes to this day. However, our understanding of what diabetes is and how it operates has changed radically within the last hundred years. When considering diabetes, it is worth noting that medical science did not discover and isolate the
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