Hi, just a quick question....how do doctors decide what category you fall into at the time of diagnosis? I'm awaiting probably diagnosis of diabetes after recent blood tests, and am frightened of having to go onto insulin immediately. My next door neighbour, who is type II, reckons you are only diagnosed type I when you are younger. From what I've read on here, that surely isn't the case. But is it simply a matter of the severity of the blood sugar level at the time of the blood test? What do they go on? And if you are type I, is having to use insulin always the case immediately?
IT is sometimes the case that you are diagnosed T2, only to discover you are, in fact, T1. Over 50% of T1s are diagnosed in adulthood, despite the popular belief that it is only a childhood disease. T1s always need to start insulin immediately unless the disease is caught in an extremely early stage (as is the case with me, so I am not yet on insulin, but will be quite soon). It is failry easy to determine via blood test whether you are T1 or T2. If at the time of diagnosis your C-peptide levels (the precursor to insulin in the body) are higher than normal, you are T2 because you are needing to produce more insulin to keep your blood sugar in range. If the level is low or non-existent you are most likely T1, because that means your beta cells are NOT producing enough insulin to control BG levels. Additionally, some people have antibodies present which help confirm a case of T1.
Going on insulin is by no means a bad thing. It does not reflect on your "success" as a person or a diabetic. All it means is that your pancreas is damaged to the point that you need a little extra help to stay in range. Its certainly not something to be ashamed about or scared of. I am looking forward to it because I know my life will be easier than dealing with the constant blood sugar spikes and plummets I'm having now! I work at a camp for T1s and most f my friends are T1s, so going on insulin just seems completely natural to me.
Please let me know if you have any questions.
Hi Wallis, thank you for your reply, and for clearing that up for me. I rang for my results yesterday, and was told that the doctor was requesting me to make a telephone appointment with him to discuss them. I'm doing that this morning. So obviously something is not right, but I'm hoping the news is not TOO bad otherwise surely he would have asked me to go in personally and see him? Maybe I'm clutching at straws here...
I don't think it's shameful to go onto insulin; it's just fear. I have a needle phobia, for one thing, and I am extremely frightened of injecting too much and reacting to it, or having a hypo. I also don't want to gain weight as it's the last thing I need. I need just the opposite. I guess it's only the stuff most people go through on diagnosis, so I know I am not alone. But it's still extremely frightening, especially as I am an anxious natured person anyway. So....all in all....if I can try, at least for a while, with diet and exercise, and possibly oral meds, then I would like to be given the chance.
Anyway, I guess I'll soon find out, later this morning
I'll just add my extra two cents here. Wallis hit the nail on the head with both issues, but there is one other test often done and that is a GAD antibody test. As T1 is an autoimmune disease, there are often (but not always) antibodies present that can help identify it.
The good news today is that there are very fine and very small needles available as well as pens and pumps, so injecting is not the chore it used to be.
Best of luck and please keep us posted on how you are doing.