Different forms of diabetes have different signs & symptoms
The signs and symptoms of diabetes will depend on the type of diabetes you have. When we talk about diabetes, we normally talk about diabetes mellitus, which is a disease characterised by elevated levels of glucose.
Since blood glucose levels are elevated, water is drawn out of the cells of your body leading to dehydration. This means the sufferer will have an increased thirst.
As water is drawn out of the tissues of your body, blood volume is increased, meaning your kidneys are working over-time producing large amounts of excess urine. This urine contains glucose (something not found in a healthy person’s urine).
The high blood glucose levels can also lead to other problems, like blurred vision (your eyes had delicate capillary beds which are affected by the blood sugar and even lead to blindness), weight loss (because you are losing energy in the form of sugar directly in your urine), and tiredness (as the organs of your body become depleted of glucose).
Another type of diabetes called diabetes insipidus has a very different cause, but also produces symptoms of excessive urine production and thirst. That disease is caused by the kidneys inability to reabsorb water from urine.
For more information on specific forms of diabetes, use the menu system at the top of this page and look under the “conditions & disease” section.