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Question:

From Seattle, Washington, USA:

I am in process of being tested for the second time for Type 2 diabetes (1st fasting test was 156). From what I've read in the other questions, is it true that once you're diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes, you never "cure" it? I am 37 years old and my mother is also Type 2 diabetic.

Answer:

You're right: once there's definite and repeated elevations of blood sugars (and the establishment of a diagnosis of diabetes), we don't undiagnose it.

However, it is possible to have scenarios where the blood sugars go back to normal after making a diagnosis of diabetes. Three situations come to mind:

  1. During the honeymoon phase of Type 1 diabetes.
  2. After delivery in a woman who developed diabetes during her pregnancy. (This diagnosis is called "gestational diabetes;" after delivery, most women whose diabetes was first diagnosed during the pregnancy will revert to normal).
  3. If Type 2 diabetes is aggravated by obesity (or other stressful situations), and the patient and their diabetes team can control the aggravating factors (that is, lose weight if obese), sometimes the diabetes will go into remission (normal blood sugars without medications). However, the diabetes is not considered to be "cured" since future stressful events (or regaining the lost weight) will bring back the hyperglycemia.

WWQ

Original posting 15 Jul 1998
Posted to Diagnosis and Symptoms

  
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Last Updated: Tuesday April 06, 2010 15:08:58
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