Diabetes mellitus effects about 8 million Americans, while another 6 to 8 million have abnormal carbohydrate tolerance. About 80% of diabetics in this country are obese and develop their disease in middle age and are classified as the maturity onset type. The pathogenesis and treatment of this common metabolic problem is the subject of this study.
DIAGNOSIS AND CLASSIFICATION
The criteria for the diagnosis of diabetes mellitus have been established by the National Diabetes Data Group1 and are as follows: (1) fasting plasma glucose is 140 mg/dL or greater; (2) sustained hyperglycemia in an oral glucose tolerance test such that at two hours the plasma glucose is 200 mg/dL or greater, and at one point between 0 time and two hours, the plasma glucose is 200 mg/dL or greater; or (3) classic symptoms of diabetes with an unequivocal elevation of the plasma glucose level. The fulfillment of any one