Diabetic Terms And Definitions A-B

Diabetic Terms And Definitions A-B


A1C Test - Also called the glycosylated hemoglobin test gives the average blood glucose levels over the past 2-3 months and should be done every 3 to 6 months. This test measures the amount of glucose that is attached to hemoglobin (the oxygen-carrying component of your red blood cells). When blood glucose is high the percentage of glucose that attaches itself to the hemoglobin cells increases. People without diabetes have an A1C level of 5% and diabetic patients should aim for an A1C reading of 7% or less.

Adult Onset Diabetes - This is the former name of Type 2 diabetes that is still commonly in use today. Also called Non Insulin Dependant Diabetes. AOD occurs when the pancreas does not produce enough insulin, the cells of the body have become resistant to the actions of insulin or both. More here

Albumin - A blood protein, that if found in the urine serves as a signal of the first stage of kidney disease, which can be a complication of diabetes. More here

Alpha Cell - A type of pancreatic cell that produces a releases the hormone glucagon, which is used by the body to signal the liver to release its stored glucose into the blood to be used for energy.

Anemia - Anemia occurs when you have lower than normal levels of red blood cells in the blood, which results in less oxygen being carried throughout your body.

Auto Immune response - A condition in which the body perceives one or more of its own tissues to be a foreign substance, which results in the production of antibodies against that tissue. Type 1 diabetes results from an autoimmune response.


Basal Rate - Refers to a continuous supply of insulin, such as that provided with an insulin pump.

Beta Cell - A pancreatic cell that makes insulin, which resides in the masses of tissue in the pancreas called the islets of Langerhans. Also called islet cells.

Blood fats - Is a general term used to describe the overall levels of fats in the bloodstream such as triglycerides and cholesterol.

Blood Glucose - Commonly referred to as blood sugar, this is the body's main source of energy. It is obtained from food after it is digested and the carbohydrates are converted into a usable form of energy (glucose), or made in the liver. Glucose is then distributed to the cells of the body through the bloodstream to be used as energy. Also called glucose, dextrose or blood sugar.

Blood Glucose Level - The term used to describe the levels of glucose as measured in milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL) in the U.S. The standard used in the rest of the world is millimeters per liter (mmol/L).More here

Blood glucose monitor - An electronic device that measures the overall levels of glucose in the blood.

Blood sugar - The most common term used to describe blood glucose.

Blood sugar level - A more common term used to describe blood glucose level. See blood glucose level. More Here

Blood sugar tests - Test performed most commonly with a blood glucose monitor to measure the levels of glucose (sugar) in the bloodstream.

Blood Urea Nitrogen - Blood urea nitrogen (BUN) is a waste product found in the blood that is created from the breakdown of protein. Urea is filtered from the blood by the kidneys and as kidney function decreases urea (BUN) levels increase.

Body mass index - Body mass index or (BMI) is a mathematical formulation using a persons height and weight to determine what their optimal weight should be, and if they are currently obese or even underweight. A BMI between 19 and 24.9 is generally considered normal. You are considered overweight if your BMI is between 25 and 29.9, and obese if your BMI is 30 or more.

Bolus - A bolus is an extra dose of insulin taken to compensate for an expected rise in blood glucose, normally after eating.

Brittle diabetes - Brittle diabetes refers to a condition that most commonly occurs in type 1 diabetics where unpredictable rises and falls in blood glucose levels make it difficult to control.

BUN Test - A test measures the amount of nitrogen (in the form of urea) found in the bloodstream. An increase in the BUN level is known as azotemia and is an indicator of decreased kidney function. A test often used in conjunction with the creatinine test to evaluate kidney function.