Diabetes mellitus, more commonly known as just diabetes, is actually a group of diseases. These diseases cause disruptions in the body's ability to properly produce or make use of the hormone insulin, which is used to control the blood sugar, or glucose, levels in the body. Due to these hormone fluctuations, surgery can be a particularly stressful thought for the diabetic patient. Diabetes and surgery can be managed with careful planning and close contact with medical professionals. Getting the blood sugar as close to normal is an important step, as is planning the time of day for the surgery and taking care of activities such as filling prescriptions before the surgical procedure.
Before the surgery is performed, the patient will likely have to undergo a series of medical tests to verify overall health. Having diabetes and surgery can potentially complicate some procedures. Therefore, it is extremely important for the patient to work with the doctor in order to bring the blood sugar levels as close to normal as possible beforehand. Having normal glucose levels will also help the patient to heal better after the surgery.
The anesthesiologist is the doctor responsible for monitoring blood sugar levels while the surgeon is busy operating. The patient will typically meet with this specialist before the surgery is performed. This is a good time for the patient to ask questions concerning diabetes and surgery. It is important that the medical team has a complete and accurate medical history on file for the patient so that blood sugar levels are properly monitored during the operation.
When diabetes and surgery are at issue, it is often advised that the patient attempt to have the surgical procedure performed as early in the morning as possible. This is often advised because there is some amount of waiting involved before even the most well-planned surgery. The less time spent waiting without being able to eat, the better the patient's blood sugar levels will be during surgery.
A patient who is forced to deal with both diabetes and surgery may want to discuss any necessary prescriptions before the surgical procedure. For instance, if the doctor will be prescribing pain medications, it is helpful for the diabetic patient to have the prescription filled and medication available before going in for surgery. The patient should also discuss proper dosage amounts with the doctor. Some medications interfere with insulin levels and should be adjusted as necessary depending on the needs of the individual patient.