Diabetes Glossary

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

Browse Glossary: "l"

lactic acidosis

the buildup of lactic acid in the body. The cells make lactic acid when they use glucose signs of lactic acidosis are deep and rapid breathing, vomiting, and abdominal pain. Lactic acidosis may be caused by diabetic ketoacidosis or liver or kidney disease.

lancet

a spring-loaded device used to prick the skin with a small needle to obtain a drop of blood for blood glucose monitoring.

laser surgery treatment

a type of therapy that uses a strong beam of light to treat a damaged area. The beam of light is called a laser. A laser is sometimes used to seal blood vessels in the eye of a person with diabetes. See photocoagulation.

latent autoimmune diabetes in adults

LADA

a condition in which type 1 diabetes develops in adults.

LDL cholesterol (low-density lipoproteincholesterol)

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

a fat found in the blood that takes cholesterol around the body to where it is needed for cell repair and also deposits it on the inside of artery walls. Sometimes called "bad" cholesterol.

lente insulin

LEN-tay

an intermediate-acting insulin. On average, lente insulin starts to lower blood glucose levels within 1 to 2 hours after injection. It has its strongest effect 8 to 12 hours after injection but keeps working for 18 to 24 hours after injection. Also called L insulin.

limited joint mobility

a condition in which the joints swell and the skin of the hand becomes thick, tight, and waxy, making the joints less able to move. It may affect the fingers and arms as well as other joints in the body.

lipid

LIP-id

a term for fat in the body. Lipids can be broken down by the body and used for energy.

lipid profile

a blood test that measures total cholesterol , triglycerides , and HDL cholesterol. LDL cholesterol is then calculated from the results. A lipid profile is one measure of a person's risk of cardiovascular disease.

lipoatrophy

LIP-oh-DIH-struh-fee

defect in the breaking down or building up of fat below the surface of the skin, resulting in lumps or small dents in the skin surface. (See lipohypertrophy or lipoatrophy.) Lipodystrophy may be caused by repeated injections of insulin in the same spot.

lipodystrophy

LIP-oh-DIH-struh-fee

defect in the breaking down or building up of fat below the surface of the skin, resulting in lumps or small dents in the skin surface. (See lipohypertrophy or lipoatrophy.) Lipodystrophy may be caused by repeated injections of insulin in the same spot.

lipohypertrophy

LIP-oh-hy-PER-truh-fee

buildup of fat below the surface of the skin, causing lumps. Lipohypertrophy may be caused by repeated injections of insulin in the same spot.

lispro insulin

LYZ-proh

a rapid-acting insulin. On average, lispro (Humalog) insulin starts to lower blood glucose within 5 minutes after injection. It has its strongest effect 30 minutes to 1 hour after injection but keeps working for 3 hours after injection.

liver

an organ in the body that changes food into energy, removes alcohol and poisons from the blood, and makes bile, a substance that breaks down fats and helps rid the body of wastes.

long-acting insulin

a type of insulin that starts to lower blood glucose within 4 to 6 hours after injection and has its strongest effect 10 to 18 hours after injection. See ultralente insulin.

low blood sugar

see hypoglycemia.

low-density lipoprotein cholesterol

see LDL cholesterol.

    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.