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From Michigan, USA:

I have a 2 1/2 year old son who was born hypoglycemic. His condition was not known until one day after discharge when we returned him to the doctor's office and sugar was 11 mg/dl [0.6 mmol/l]. He spent 47 days in Pediatric ICU (also from complications that they caused) which has also left him visually impaired and developmentally delayed. I was not diabetic during pregnancy. The tests that were run showed that he has excess insulin in his system and was told to me by his endocrinologist that his pancreas had too many islets and that he would outgrow this, which he has but has a high risk of being diabetic at an early age. Are they any known causes for infant hypoglycemia? We were told that there have not been enough cases to have any research done -- told that is very, very rare, but I see a lot of questions pertaining to this on your site. And also one other question -- can a person share e-mail addresses with people who have had experiences with this diagnosis? If so I would be glad to exchange info with other parents. I currently belong to MUMS (mothers united for moral support) and we have a exchange group, but I have only received one phone call and I wasn't home and the person said they would call back and I'm still waiting for that call.


Hyperinsulinemic (too much insulin) hypoglycemia is a well described cause of hypoglycemia in infancy. From your letter the cause seems to be nesidioblastosis (excess of islet cells). This, too, is well described. While rare, your endocrinologist and most others, have seen a few cases of this condition.

Hypoglycemia that does not occur in the first hours of life, especially if it occurs after discharge, can be hard to identify. It can be very devastating to the developing brain and cause the visual problems you identify in your son.

I am unaware of a support group for this condition. Most centers would only have a single patient at any one time as most do outgrow the condition, or have it cured by surgery (a pretty drastic measure as most of the pancreas must be removed).

I hope this helps and I know this is a very hard time for you.


Original posting 13 Mar 1999
Posted to Hypoglycemia and Nesidioblastosis


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