Adaobi on Sunday: A Hilarious Approach to Understanding Diabetes


The mysteries of life may never be understood. No matter how smart humans become they may never comprehend nature’s ways.

I recently had a conversation with a friend who had just attended a medical workshop on DIABETES. He shared with me the anecdotes of a doctor who lived with the disease, and who also happened to be the facilitator of the workshop.

What I took from this conversation, and what I share with you, are the ways diabetes presents itself, even in comical ways. The illustrations were so hilarious that I wondered how a serious and deadly situation could make one laugh so hard their stomach ached. For example, the story of a man who was thanking God it was only gonorrhea he was infected with and not HIV.

With the help of Google, the search engine, I came across a decent definition of diabetes. “Diabetes, often referred to by doctors as diabetes mellitus, describes a group of metabolic diseases in which the person has high blood glucose (blood sugar), either because insulin production is inadequate, or because the body’s cells do not respond properly to insulin, or both. Patients with high blood sugar will typically experience polyuria (frequent urination); they will become increasingly thirsty (polydipsia) and hungry (polyphagia).

A person with diabetes has a condition in which the quantity of glucose in the blood is too elevated (hyperglycemia). This is because the body does not produce enough insulin, produces no insulin, or has cells that do not respond properly to the insulin the pancreas produces. This results in too much glucose building up in the blood. This excess blood glucose eventually passes out of the body in urine. So, even though the blood has plenty of glucose, the cells are not getting it for their essential energy and growth requirements.

The first anecdote the doctor gave was on how diabetes numbs the nerves. On a particular morning, the chief of a village woke up and headed to the bathroom to take his bath. The servant had brought in a bucket of hot water, and had placed it in the bath tub. The servant then dashed out to fetch cold water to add to the hot water.

Unfortunately, before the servant could get back, the monarch had stepped into the bathroom and began to bathe with the hot water. The monarch didn’t feel a thing, and the hot water terribly burnt his feet. When he stepped out, there was shock on the faces of his subjects. A doctor was called and treated the burns, but the doctor insisted on testing for diabetes. It turned out the monarch had the disease without knowing it. Typical of diabetes, the wounds remained and never healed. In fact it got worse and eventually the legs were amputated. The king became so sad and wondered how he could rule without legs, and so with a broken heart, the king slept and didn’t wake up.

Another story the doctor told was of a man who macheted his landlord. At the police station, a doctor was called to give an opinion. The doctor asked the tenant what happened. The tenant said he believed the landlord had used juju on him, otherwise why was it that every time he urinated in the public toilet, ants often feasted on his urine. It was on noticing this development that he refused to pay the landlord his rent, and so when the landlord came to ask for his rent he had no option than to fight him in retaliation. Need I say the reason for ants feasting on urine?

You know already. Diabetes.

The third story began with a security guard on night watch, who suddenly passed out. The people around tried to revive him, but to no avail. The man was pronounced dead. However, at the morgue, a pulse was found at the back of the security guard’s ear. The guard was quickly taken to hospital, and was revived. When a doctor examined the man, he asked about current medications he was on, as tests had revealed an overdose of a medication for lowering blood sugar. The guard told the doctor he went to the hospital and was diagnosed with gonorrhea. So he confined in his friend, who then prescribed a diabetic medication that reduces the level of sugar in the body, to be taken three times daily. The end result – the poor man passed out.

Quite hilarious, yet very deadly stories. Remember that regular checks can help in every situation. Consult professionals in all dealings. Life has no photocopy.

Till I write again I love you for reading.

What Do You Think?


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