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Question:

From Glenview, Illinois, USA:

When my son was first diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, my pastor told me that he would be cured but not until he was in his late teens. He is now 13, and I am praying that God not wait until his later teens. I have heard that, on some very rare occasions, that type 1 diabetes has resolved itself with puberty or older. I believe my son will be healed but want to know if there actually have been any cases of spontaneous healing.

Answer:

From Glenview, Illinois, USA:

When my son was first diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, my pastor told me that he would be cured but not until he was in his late teens. He is now 13, and I am praying that God not wait until his later teens. I have heard that, on some very rare occasions, that type 1 diabetes has resolved itself with puberty or older. I believe my son will be healed but want to know if there actually have been any cases of spontaneous healing.

DOB

Additional comments from Dr. David Schwartz:

I think that faith is indivualized -- and important. There indeed are medical studies that have demonstrated improved (not necessarily meant to be read as "cured") medical conditions in patients who had prayer as a part of their overall medical care. Similar studies show that those that maintain a sense of humor in times of adversity to better than those who do not. ("Laughter is the best medicine.") These types of studies are generally concluded to mean that keeping a positive attitude has multiple good effects.

Having said that, I regret that I am completely unaware of any patient who has bonified autoimmune type 1 diabetes who had a spontaneous "cure." Even those adult patients who have had pancreas transplants on special protocols are not "cured;" rather, they have had some prolonged (and some not) times where they did not need insulin injections with the proper function of the transplant.

There are forms of neonatal diabetes, generally due to an unusual genetic defect, that are rather transient in the first months of life; but some of them have renewed diabetes years later.

So, I would encourage you to speak with your clergy-person to maintain your spiritual compass and maintain hope for "a cure" by physicians and scientists and modern medicine or from much higher powers. But would gently ask that you not bank on that anywhere in the near future.

DS

Additional comments from Dr. Stuart Brink:

Unfortunately, there is not a single case of curing type 1 diabetes known to mankind. Experimental transplantation of several types, I guess, is a type of cure, but this is not done on teenagers since the risks are still too high and the success rate still not "good enough" to submit to "poisoning" the body's immune system. So, I'd love to know what your pastor thinks will happen, since this would be a medical first.

SB

DTQ-20021205111853
Original posting 6 Dec 2002
Posted to Research: Cure

  
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Last Updated: Tuesday April 06, 2010 15:09:42
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