Module A: Prevalence and Pathophysiology of Diabetes Mellitus

CE Credits: 1.0


Diabetes mellitus (DM) is a chronic metabolic disease that affects nearly 26 million Americans—and could affect many more in the years to come. This module covers the four different types of diabetes—the most common types being type 1 (T1DM) and type 2 (T2DM)—along with their particular risk factors, symptoms and pathophysiologies. The module also looks at the co-morbidities and long-term complications of DM—which sometimes present even before DM has been diagnosed—including heart, eye and kidney disease.

Learning objectives: After completing this module the case manager will be able to:
» State the overall prevalence of diabetes mellitus in the United States
» Identify racial and ethnic groups with a high prevalence of diabetes mellitus
» Identify the primary classifications of diabetes mellitus
» Define type 1 diabetes mellitus and describe the basic features of its pathophysiology
» Define type 2 diabetes mellitus and describe the basic features of its pathophysiology
» Describe the key causes of other types of diabetes mellitus
» Define gestational diabetes mellitus and describe the basic features of its pathophysiology
» Identify major risk factors for type 1, type 2 and gestational diabetes mellitus
» Identify the long-term complications of diabetes mellitus
» Identify common co-morbidities of diabetes mellitus

Advance your professional practice:: Because DM is so common, serious and costly, case managers act as a vital link between patients and appropriate healthcare professionals. Sometimes that may mean helping a diagnosed DM patient access effective treatment and support for their disease management; other times, it may mean identifying the risk factors or symptoms in undiagnosed DM patients, who can benefit from either effective prevention measures or earlier diagnosis for more positive outcomes.


Improve organizational performance: Healthcare organizations are often looking to control costs in the realm of diabetes care. Working with a care team, we can identify and diagnose DM earlier in patients, thus starting effective treatment before greater complications arise; as a result, case managers can make DM care more efficient and cost-effective. Likewise, in the case of T2DM, case managers identify risk factors in patients—such as pre-diabetic blood levels, or obesity—to help patients prevent DM altogether, cutting costs for everyone.