Type 1 Diabetes

  • Medical Author:
    Erica Oberg, ND, MPH

    Dr. Erica Oberg, ND, MPH, received a BA in anthropology from the University of Colorado, her doctorate of naturopathic medicine (ND) from Bastyr University, and a masters of public health (MPH) in health services research from the University of Washington. She completed her residency at the Bastyr Center for Natural Health in ambulatory primary care and fellowship training at the Health Promotion Research Center at the University of Washington.

  • Medical Editor: Jerry R. Balentine, DO, FACEP
    Jerry R. Balentine, DO, FACEP

    Jerry R. Balentine, DO, FACEP

    Dr. Balentine received his undergraduate degree from McDaniel College in Westminster, Maryland. He attended medical school at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine graduating in1983. He completed his internship at St. Joseph's Hospital in Philadelphia and his Emergency Medicine residency at Lincoln Medical and Mental Health Center in the Bronx, where he served as chief resident.

Type 1 Diabetes Symptoms, Causes, Diagnosis

What are the symptoms of type 1 diabetes?

Type 1 diabetes can be subtle or life threatening. Some people have no symptoms (asymptomatic) and type 1 diabetes isn't detected until blood or urine labs are run. If a person does have symptoms, early symptoms are

Other signs and symptoms are

People with type 1 diabetes may experience more frequent infections of the skin or respiratory tract.

Undiagnosed type 1 diabetes can become life threatening if a person goes into ketoacidosis (a state where an elevated blood sugar leads to other metabolic changes).

What are the risk factors for type 1 diabetes?

The risk factors for developing type 1 diabetes include family history (genetics)2, prenatal exposures, exposures to foods and environmental toxins early in life, and geography. Prenatal exposures include whether the mother had preeclampsia or had metabolic syndrome.. Environmental exposures include chemicals, especially those found in plastics and foods, specifically introduction of gluten before four months of age or after seven months of age or early introduction of casein (the protein in dairy).3 4 Viral infections, such as Epstein-Barr virus or EBV (mononucleosis), Coxsackie, CMV, and other infections can also be risk factors for developing type 1 diabetes.5 Living in a Northern Climate is a risk factor that has not been fully explained.

How is type 1 diabetes diagnosed?

Type 1 diabetes is diagnosed with a blood test for blood glucose. If it is greater than 125 when fasting or greater than 200 randomly, a diagnosis of diabetes is made. To confirm whether it is type 1 or type 2 diabetes, blood tests measure antibodies. Additionally, a presumptive diagnosis can be made based on glucose or ketones in the urine. A c-peptide test can determine how much insulin the pancreas is producing.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 7/1/2015

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  • Type 1 Diabetes - Symptoms

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