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Introduction to Diabetes

Diabetes mellitus is a condition that occurs when your blood glucose, also known as blood sugar, is too high. Blood glucose is a person’s main source of energy and comes from the food that we eat. Insulin, a hormone made by the pancreas, helps glucose from food get into our cells to be used for energy.

Reports from the WHO (World Health Organisation) and the IDF (International Diabetes Federation) both show a marked increase in the total number of people with diabetes worldwide over the last decade.

While there were 285 million people with diabetes in 2010, this figure reached 463 million in 2019. One in 11 adults on Earth lives with diabetes, a figure that has doubled since the end of the last century. 

The WHO has established three main classes of diabetes mellitus depending on the origin of the condition: type 1 or insulin-dependent diabetes, type 2 diabetes, also called insulin resistance, and gestational diabetes triggered only during pregnancy.

For more information on diabetes please visit our Making Diabetes Easier website

Diabetes explained

Type 1 Diabetes

Type 1 diabetes affects millions of people throughout the world.

It is characterised by insulin deficiency and is caused by the immune system producing auto-antibodies, which target the pancreas and then partially or completely destroy its beta cells. Pancreatic beta cells are responsible for secreting insulin, an essential hormone for the regulation of blood glucose levels. Their destruction causes a decrease in the production of insulin which then results in a build-up of glucose in the blood, which can lead to an increased risk of hyperglycaemia and other complications (heart disease, blindness, kidney failure).   For this reason, people with type 1 diabetes are also considered as being insulin-dependent: a supply of insulin is essential to enable people living with type 1 to maintain stable glucose levels as the body is no longer able to produce it in sufficient quantities.

Medical research and the considerable technological advances made over the last decade have nonetheless provided a better overview of the factors leading to the appearance of type 1 diabetes, and has therefore developed better diagnosis techniques, better preventive measures and better treatment.  

Type 1 diabetes has two predominant symptoms:

  • a frequent urge to urinate;
  • a feeling of excessive thirst.
  • In children the condition frequently results in significant weight loss, whereas in adults it often manifests as weight loss while appetite remains unaffected.

Type 1 Diabetes

Therapy solutions

Insulin therapy remains the standard treatment for type 1 diabetes, with various methods of administration and associated technologies to improve patients' daily lives.

For more information on the various treatments for type 1 diabetes, visit Diabetes explained

Our diabetes products and services

Products and Services

Air Liquide Healthcare provides medical products and services that help protect vulnerable lives across the UK and Ireland. Globally, Air Liquide supports over 40,000 patients with diabetes through the provision of equipment and related support and clinical services.

We are the authorised Ireland and UK distributor of the Tandem Diabetes Care innovative t:slim X2™ Insulin Pump. The latest version of the t:slim X2™ features Control-IQ™ Technology – an advanced hybrid closed-loop technology designed to help increase time in range, as measured by CGM, by predicting and helping prevent both highs and lows.

When you purchase a t:slim X2™ insulin pump from Air Liquide Healthcare, you get more than just a pump;

  • Rapid patient-focused delivery - delivery of insulin pumps and consumables to any location in Ireland
  • Expert training - education and support provided to the customer and Healthcare Professional from the start, and throughout the lifetime of the pump
  • Patient-centric support - 24 hour telephone support through our Customer Service team. Our dedicated Customer Service call centre supports over 40,000 patients and Healthcare Professionals
  • Four year limited warranty - if you need a replacement pump we will look after getting a replacement pump to you.
  • Travel support - if you are travelling outside of Ireland, don’t worry, we are always available to help

Products  &  Services

Products and Support

 For further information or support with your Diabetes products please contact us directly on
Diabetes Customer Service Ireland - 1800 12 4912
Diabetes Customer Service UK - 0800 012 1560