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National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)

One of the 17 institutes that make up the National Institutes of Health, an agency of the Public Health Service.

Necrobiosis Lipoidica Diabeticorum

A skin condition usually on the lower part of the legs. The lesions can be small or extend over a large area. They are usually raised, yellow, and waxy in appearance and often have a purple border. Young women are most often affected. This condition occurs in people with diabetes, or it may be a sign of diabetes. It also occurs in people who do not have diabetes.

Neovascularization

The term used when new, tiny blood vessels grow in a new place, for example, out from the retina.

See also: Diabetic retinopathy.

Nephrologist

A doctor who sees and treats people with kidney diseases.

Nephropathy

Any disease of the kidneys. Kidney damage caused by diabetes, called diabetic nephropathy, can occur in several ways. The typical form of diabetic nephropathy, called diabetic glomerulosclerosis, has large amounts of urine protein, hypertension, and is slowly progressive. It usually doesn't occur until after many years of diabetes, and can be delayed by tight control of the blood sugar. Usually the best lab test for early detection of diabetic nephropathy is measurement of microalbumin in the urine.

Nerve Conduction Velocity (NCV) Studies and Electromyography (EMG)

Tests used to diagnose neuropathy and check for nerve damage. These tests are usually both run at the same time, using the same equipment.

Nesidioblastosis

A group of rare conditions occurring in infancy in which excessively large amounts of insulin are secreted by the beta cells in relation to the prevailing blood sugar level. Sometimes the condition occurs later in life, and sometimes it is due to an autosomal recessive genetic defect. Also called Persistent Hyperinsulinemic Hypoglycemia of Infancy (PHHI).

Neurologist

A doctor who sees and treats people with problems of the nervous system.

Neuropathy

Disease of the nervous system. Many people who have had diabetes for a while have nerve damage. The three major forms of nerve damage are: peripheral neuropathy, autonomic neuropathy, and mononeuropathy. The most common form is peripheral neuropathy, which mainly affects the feet and legs.

See also: Peripheral neuropathy; autonomic neuropathy; mononeuropathy.

NIDDM (Noninsulin-dependent diabetes mellitus)

See: Type 2 diabetes mellitus.

NOD Mouse

A strain of mice in which the female has an especially high incidence of a diabetes similar to Type 1 in humans. Much used as a research model for prevention and new onset treatment.

Noninsulin-Dependent Diabetes Mellitus (NIDDM)

See: Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus.

Noninvasive Blood Glucose Monitoring

A way to measure blood glucose without having to prick the finger to obtain a blood sample. Several noninvasive devices are currently being developed.

Nonketotic Coma (Hyperglycemic hyperosmolar nonketotic syndrome, Hyperglycemic hyperosmolar nonketotic coma)

A complication of diabetes caused by a lack of insulin and dehydration. It is diagnosed when the patient has:

  1. very high levels of glucose (sugar) in the blood;
  2. absence of ketoacidosis;
  3. severe dehydration;
  4. a sleepy, confused, or comatose state.


Nonketotic coma is more likely to be associated with Type 2 diabetes, and is sometimes the initial presenting situation for Type 2 diabetes. Nonketotic coma is uncommon in Type 1 Diabetes.

NPH Insulin

A type of insulin that is intermediate-acting.

Nutrition

The process by which the body draws nutrients from food and uses them to make or mend its cells.

Nutritionist
See: Dietitian.

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P R S T U V W X

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