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Question:

From America OnLine:

My six year old son was diagnosed with diabetes on Monday. He has been having symptoms that are associated with diabetes, but not constantly. When he became sick with 104 degree temperature I took him to the doctor and I told him that he has been having some of the symptoms and being that diabetes does run in my family I was concerned.

So his doctor gave him a urine test and it was positive for sugar in the urine, he also sent it to the lab and again it was positive. Now when I got to the endocrinology office on Friday the urine test and the blood test was negative. They sent the blood out to be tested also and I have not gotten the results as of yet. But this has me very puzzled and concerned. Can he still have diabetes and it just doesnt show up all of the time?

I also have to inform you that whenever he becomes ill he has a very strong smell of alcohol that comes from his mouth this I have noticed happens whenever he is sick.

If you could please try and help me understand why this would happen. I am very concerned.

Answer:

Occasionally children will have transient high blood sugar during an illness. If the blood sugar becomes normal very quickly, only 25% of these children will go on to develop true, permanent diabetes later on. Approximately 75% will never develop a high blood sugar again.

We know that the pancreas gradually stops making insulin before the blood sugar actually becomes high in true, permanent Insulin Dependent Diabetes. During an illness, more insulin is required than usual to keep the blood sugar normal. If the pancreas is failing, it may be able to make enough insulin to keep the blood sugar normal when your son is well, but may not be able to make extra insulin to keep his blood sugar normal when he is sick.

If your son develops signs of diabetes: thirst, frequent urination, nausea, vomiting, or fruity odor of the breath, you should contact his doctor immediately. You may want to ask his doctor if you should test his urine for sugar and ketones if he gets sick.

TGL

Original posting 15 May 96

  
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Last Updated: Tuesday April 06, 2010 15:08:52
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