Diabetes Glossary

Browse or search for definitions from our comprehensive list of diabetes terms.

Browse Glossary: "h"

HDL cholesterol , stands for high-density-lipoprotein cholesterol

kuh-LESS-tuh-rawl LIP-oh-PRO-teen:

a fat found in the blood that takes extra cholesterol from the blood to the liver for removal. Sometimes called "good" cholesterol.

heart disease

Heart disease is a broad term used to describe a range of diseases that affect your heart, and in some cases, your blood vessels. The various diseases that fall under the umbrella of heart disease include diseases of your blood vessels, such as coronary artery disease; heart rhythm problems

hemodialysis

see dialysis.

hemoglobin A1C test

see A1C.

heredity

the passing of a trait from parent to child.

high blood glucose

see hyperglycemia.

high blood pressure

see hypertension.

high-density lipoprotein cholesterol

see HDL cholesterol.

home glucose monitor

see blood glucose meter.

honeymoon phase

temporary remission of hyperglycemia that occurs in some people newly diagnosed with type 1 diabetes , when some insulin secretion resumes for a short time, usually a few months, before stopping again.

hormone

a chemical produced in one part of the body and released into the blood to trigger or regulate particular functions of the body. For example, insulin is a hormone made in the pancreas that tells other cells when to use glucose for energy. Synthetic hormones, made for use as medicines, can be the same or different from those made in the body.

human leukocyte antigens

HLA

proteins located on the surface of the cell that help the immune system identify the cell either as one belonging to the body or as one from outside the body. Some patterns of these proteins may mean increased risk of developing type 1 diabetes.

hyperglycemia

HY-per-gly-SEE-mee-uh

excessive blood glucose. Fasting hyperglycemia is blood glucose above a desirable level after a person has fasted for at least 8 hours. Postprandial hyperglycemia is blood glucose above a desirable level 1 to 2 hours after a person has eaten.

hyperinsulinemia

HY-per-IN-suh-lih-NEE-mee-uh

a condition in which the level of insulin in the blood is higher than normal. Caused by overproduction of insulin by the body. Related to insulin resistance.

hyperlipidemia

HY-per-li-pih-DEE-mee-uh

higher than normal fat and cholesterol levels in the blood.

hyperosmolar hyperglycemic nonketotic syndrome

HY-per-oz-MOH-lur HY-per-gly-SEE-mik non-kee-TAH-tik

(HHNS): an emergency condition in which one's blood glucose level is very high and ketones are not present in the blood or urine. If HHNS is not treated, it can lead to coma or death.

hypertension

HY-per-TEN-shun

a condition present when blood flows through the blood vessels with a force greater than normal. Also called high blood pressure. Hypertension can strain the heart, damage blood vessels, and increase the risk of heart attack, stroke , kidney failure , and death.

hypoglycemia

hy-po-gly-SEE-mee-uh

a condition that occurs when one's blood glucose is lower than normal, usually less than 70 mg/dL. Signs include hunger, nervousness, shakiness, perspiration, dizziness or light-headedness, sleepiness, and confusion. If left untreated, hypoglycemia may lead to unconsciousness. Hypoglycemia is treated by consuming a carbohydrate -rich food such as a glucose tablet or juice. It may also be treated with an injection of glucagon if the person is unconscious or unable to swallow. Also called an insulin reaction.

hypoglycemia unawareness

un-uh-WARE-ness

a state in which a person does not feel or recognize the symptoms of hypoglycemia. People who have frequent episodes of hypoglycemia may no longer experience the warning signs of it.

hypotension

low blood pressure or a sudden drop in blood pressure. Hypotension may occur when a person rises quickly from a sitting or reclining position, causing dizziness or fainting.

    Disclaimer

    Our glossary includes and builds on the definitions found in The Diabetes Dictionary (NIH Publication No. 07-3016, October 2006) published by the National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse, which is available on their website and is not copyrighted. The Clearinghouse encourages users of this publication to duplicate and distribute as many copies as desired.

    The U.S. Government does not endorse or favor any specific commercial product or company. Trade, proprietary, or company names appearing in this document are used only because they are considered essential in the context of the information provided.

    The National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse (NDIC) is a service of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK). For more information, visit their website at www.diabetes.niddk.nih.gov.