man with diabetes and his family

Diabetes Services

The UCI Health Diabetes Center is the only university-based, comprehensive diabetes center in Orange County. A leading medical institution that serves more than one million patients with diabetes in Southern California, the center is fully equipped to provide world-class diabetes care and cutting-edge research.

As a major diabetes resource for community physicians, nurses, educators, patients and their families, it also augments the clinical, educational and research missions of UCI Health and the UCI School Medical Center.

If you suspect you have diabetes or have been diagnosed with the disease, our UCI Health Diabetes Center specialists are experts in treating both type 1 and type 2 diabetes, and the many related conditions it can trigger.

For more information or to schedule a consultation, please call 949-824-8656.

Diabetes affects more than 30 million American children and adults, and another 84 million who have prediabetes, many of whom are unaware they have the condition, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Diabetes is the seventh leading cause of death in United States and is the leading cause of kidney failure, adult blindness and amputations of limbs not associated with trauma. It is also a major cause of heart disease, stroke and hypertension.

Our diabetes specialists are here to help you control the disease and avoid these life-threatening complications.

There are two types of diabetes:

  • In type 1 — formerly called juvenile-onset diabetes — the body fails to produce the hormone insulin, which regulates blood sugar in the body. Type 1 usually occurs in children or young adults, but it can develop at any age.
  • In type 2 — previously known as adult-onset diabetes — the body develops insulin resistance, a disorder in which the cells don't use insulin properly and can't trigger the conversion of food into energy. As the body's need for insulin increases, the pancreas gradually loses its ability to produce the hormone. Type 2 accounts for more than 90 percent of all diagnosed cases of diabetes.

The warning signs of diabetes include:

  • Frequent urination
  • Unusual thirst
  • Dry mouth
  • Unusual weight loss
  • Increased hunger
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Irritability
  • Blurred or decreased vision
  • Headaches
  • Frequent infections
  • Slow healing cuts or bruises
  • Tingling or numbness in the hands and feet
  • Recurring skin, gum or bladder infections

Our goal is to help patients develop the skills to manage their diabetes. The UCI Health Diabetes Center staff work with patients, families and primary care physicians to coordinate and provide diabetes care to meet the needs of each individual. Diabetes management programs are designed to help patients take charge of their own health and well-being. Education programs — both individualized and group — are focused on giving patients the tools they need to avoid the complications of diabetes. This includes teaching patients how to be self-vigilant about blood glucose monitoring and to maintain better health throughout their lifetime.

Diabetes treatment and management are centered on diet, insulin regulation and oral medication to lower blood glucose levels. People with type 1 diabetes must have insulin delivered by injection or a pump to survive.

Many people with type 2 diabetes can control blood glucose levels by:

  • Following a healthy diet plan
  • Following an exercise program
  • Losing excess weight
  • Taking oral medication

Medications often change during the course of the disease, and some people with type 2 diabetes may also need insulin to control their blood glucose levels. Many people with diabetes may also need medications to control cholesterol levels and blood pressure.

Education and training to self-manage the disease is vital for the diabetic to achieve improved health and a better quality of life. By learning healthy eating habits, being active and accurately monitoring blood sugar levels, type 2 diabetics can successfully manage their disease and related conditions.

As part of Orange County's only academic health system, the diabetes center has a multidisciplinary team of specialists able to treat the full spectrum of complications that diabetic patients can experience, from vision, vascular and neurological complications to heart and kidney disease.

Our medical team includes:
Collaborative Research

Our dedication to providing the highest standard of patient care is rivaled only by our passion for preventing diabetes and ultimately, finding a cure. Our specialists have access to leading-edge research that makes it possible to apply new approaches to diabetes treatment. From time to time, there are opportunities for patients and community members to participate in clinical studies and trials.

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