Mike experienced numbness in his feet and legs for several months before being diagnosed with diabetes. He says it felt like he had socks on when he didn’t and that his feet also felt leathery and numb. He thought he had a water retention problem from eating too much salt. His evening snacks included salty chips. He thought he could remedy that by drinking lots of water. Only when this feeling started climbing up his legs did he take action.
Advice to seek medical attention came from an unlikely source. Mike and I thought he needed to see a chiropractor because we thought he had a pinched nerve or something out of place in his lower back. I routinely see a chiropractor. At one of my visits, I asked my chiropractor for an appointment for Mike. He asked what his symptoms were and I told him that Mike’s legs and feet were numb and felt like he was wearing socks. I also told him that the feeling was now climbing up his legs. Mike and I thought an adjustment would remedy those feelings. My chiropractor said that Mike should seek immediate medical attention and ask his primary care physician to test Mike for diabetes. He also said that a back problem could case tingling down his legs, not up his legs.
It just so happened that I had an extra diabetic testing kit at home. My mother, who is Type 2 diabetic, loaned it to me to test myself. I had recently been diagnosed as pre-diabetic and I wanted to know what my numbers were.
I told Mike what my chiropractic doctor had said. Mike’s reaction was that he wasn’t excessively thirsty (one of the symptoms of diabetes) and besides he took after his Dad’s side of the family. He refused to let me test him. That was on a Wednesday. I finally wore him down and tested him on Saturday morning. His results were shocking…282!
Mike’s family has a history of diabetes. He had uncles and aunts that had the disease. His older brother has Type 2 diabetes, is insulin dependent, and overweight. Mike is thin, close to his target weight and was shocked to find out his number was so high. The normal fasting glucose range should be between 70 and 100.
Here are some symptoms diabetics can experience, taken from the Centers for Disease Control website.
- Frequent urination
- Excessive thirst
- Unexplained weight loss
- Extreme hunger
- Sudden vision changes
- Tingling or numbness in hands or feet
- Feeling very tired much of the time
- Very dry skin
- Sores that are slow to heal
- More infections than usual.Mike has felt very tired for a long time. He was iron anemic as a kid and was taking a men’s multivitamin with iron to offset what he thought was iron- deficiency anemia. He also was experiencing the tingling and numbness in his feet. Virginia Mason Medical Center answers what is normal blood glucose levels below.The amount of glucose (“sugar”, measured in mg/dL) in your blood changes throughout the day and night. Your levels will change depending upon when, what and how much you have eaten, and whether or not you have exercised.
Normal Blood Sugars
- A normal fasting (no food for eight hours) blood sugar level is between 70 and 99 mg/dL
- A normal blood sugar level two hours after eating is less than 140 mg/dL
Diabetes is diagnosed by any one of the following:
- Two consecutive fasting blood glucose tests that are equal to or greater than 126 mg/dL
- Any random blood glucose that is greater than 200 mg/dL
- An A1c test that is equal to or greater than 6.5 percent. A1c is an easy blood test that gives a three month average of blood sugars
- A two-hour oral glucose tolerance test with any value over 200 mg/dL