Diabetes symptoms, why erectile dysfunction, retrograde ejaculation is a warning sign

Diabetes symptoms: Diabetes in men leads to the damage of the autonomic nervous system (ANS), which further hampers the blood vessels and nerves in the penis, resulting in erectile dysfunction.

An overactive bladder or the inability to control urination could be indicative of diabetes. Diabetes in men has certain specific symptoms, and it is best that you get yourself checked to know exactly what is going on in your body.

In fact, those with Type 1 diabetes also tend to have a sense of stigma, according to a study published in the Journal of Medical Internet Research. The study found that many youngsters neglect health concerns arising out of diabetes due to a sense of stigma associated with it. The study comprised 380 Canadians aged between 14 and 24.

What is diabetes?

Diabetes is a chronic condition in which a person’s blood sugar level increases beyond the normal range. In the absence of timely diagnosis and management, it can lead to many related health complications – including damage to the heart, nerves, eyes, kidneys and feet.

Uncontrolled blood sugar can give rise to fatty deposits on the walls of blood vessels due to a spike in blood pressure levels. This can further restrict blood flow and cause atherosclerosis. Other complications include foot ulcers and, eventually, amputation.

How can you control diabetes?

“It is possible to manage diabetes and prevent co-morbidities by making certain lifestyle changes. Some of these include consuming a diet rich of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains; regular physical activity; adherence to medication schedule; taking insulin injections as advised and managing modifiable risk factors such smoking and drinking,” advises Dr Minal Vohra, a Jaipur-based endocrinologist at Manipal Hospital who also is on health app BeatO.

What are the different kinds of diabetes?

There are two forms of the disease. While Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune condition, Type 2 diabetes results in the body becoming resistant to the normal effects of insulin. “Type 2 diabetes can result in the body gradually losing its capacity to produce sufficient insulin if not managed in time. A third form, called gestational diabetes, occurs in pregnant women. Left unmanaged, it can cause birth complications and even premature delivery,” says Dr Vohra.

What is prediabetes?

Prediabetes is a condition that indicates a person’s likelihood to develop Type 2 diabetes later in life. In prediabetes, the blood sugar levels shoot up to an extent that is not normal but not high enough to be classified as Type 2 diabetes either. A fasting blood glucose level between 100 and 125mg/dL can indicate prediabetes. This condition does not often present itself with marked symptoms.

It starts becoming apparent only when common signs of diabetes, such as excessive thirst, frequent urination and fatigue, start showing up. Some people with prediabetes may also experience skin darkening in certain areas of the body – a condition called Acanthosis nigricans.

What are the different signs of diabetes in men?

Diabetes symptoms specific to men are as follows:

Erectile dysfunction (ED): In this condition, a man may be unable to achieve or maintain an erection. “Diabetes leads to the damage of the autonomic nervous system (ANS), which further hampers the blood vessels and nerves in the penis, resulting in ED. ANS is responsible for controlling the widening or constricting of blood vessels,” says Dr Nishi Nath Jha, a Delhi-based diabetologist from Lybrate.

Retrograde ejaculation (RE): In this condition, some semen is released into the bladder. A marked symptom of this condition is noticeably less semen being released during ejaculation.

Urological Issues: “This is a result of diabetes-related nerve damage. Some urological issues include an overactive bladder, inability to control urination and urinary tract infections,” explains Dr Jha.