Diabetes in Asian American Adolescents

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In today’s society diabetes mellitus has become a prevalent issue, especially because it is affecting our youth in increasing numbers. Diabetes is defined as “a complex disorder of carbohydrate, fat, and protein metabolism that is primarily a result of a deficiency or complete lack of insulin secretion by the beta cells of the pancreas or resistance to insulin ("DM," 2013, p. 522). The number of adults diagnosed with diabetes has significantly increased from the 1980s to today, as well as the number of children being diagnosed. Risk factors such as family history, obesity, and ethnicity are all crucial to the prevalence of diabetes and its devastating effects on the future health of those affected. Asian-American ethnicity is associated within the high risk factors along with several other ethnicities such as African Americans, Hispanic Americans, and Native Americans (Smeltzer, Bare, Hinkle, & Cheever, 2010, p. 1197). The following will establish how diabetes in adolescents has become a critical topic for their generation and the effects it is having on their personal care and in collaboration with their healthcare providers and nurses. Impact on Patients and Patient Care Adolescents are currently being affected by diabetes because of several factors, but the biggest and most crucial factor is obesity. Research by the Agency of Healthcare Research and Quality on Asian Americans, more specifically those from a Southern Asian background have shown that although the patients’ height, weight, and body mass index (BMI) show the person to be overweight or obese the patient did not perceive themselves as overweight or obese. Those of Asian descent who are diagnosed with type 2 diabetes are diagnosed at a lower BMI than many ot... ... middle of paper ... ...s. (2013, March). Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality: Research Activities, 13. Retrieved from http://www.ahrq.gov/news/newsletters/research-activities/13mar/Mar13RA.pdf Scott, L. K. (2013). Presence of type 2 diabetes risk factors in children. Pediatric Nursing, 4(4), 190-196. Retrieved from http://web.b.ebscohost.com.ezproxy.com.edu/ehost/pdfviewer/pdfviewer?sid=d2677c5a-a052-420e-9d1c-c43b91053f41%40sessionmgr115&vid=12&hid=108 Smeltzer, S. C., Bare, B. G., Hinkle, J. L., & Cheever, K. H. (2010). Brunner & Suddarth’s textbook of medical-surgical nursing (12th ed.). Philadelphia, PA: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. South Asians may not perceive themselves as being overweight or obese. (2013, March). Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality: Research Activities, 18-19. Retrieved from http://www.ahrq.gov/news/newsletters/research-activities/13mar/Mar13RA.pdf

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