|Year : 2015 | Volume
| Issue : 7 | Page : 78-79
Real life with type 1 diabetes mellitus
Consultant Diabetologist, Yagnik Diabetes Care Centre, Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh, India
|Date of Web Publication||17-Apr-2015|
Yagnik Diabetes Care Centre, Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh
Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None
| Abstract|| |
Type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM) is a form of diabetes mellitus that results from the autoimmune destruction of the insulin-producing beta cells in the pancreas. Those affected by this disorder have a challenging life, both in terms of health and social adjustments. Various "alternative medicines" are offered to them in an effort to cure. Research has shown that good control over diabetes can be maintained through regular self-monitoring of blood glucose and frequent checking of diabetic complications. Here, I describe a female with T1DM and her journey with the disorder.
Keywords: Diabetes, quality of life, type 1 diabetes
|How to cite this article:|
Yagnik D. Real life with type 1 diabetes mellitus. Indian J Endocr Metab 2015;19, Suppl S1:78-9
| Introduction|| |
Various clinical trials like the Diabetes Control and Complications Trial and Epidemiology of Diabetes Interventions and Complications Trial have shown that good control over diabetes can be maintained through regular self-monitoring of blood glucose and frequent checking of diabetic complications. 
Here I present a case of a 49-year-old female, diagnosed with type 1 diabetes mellitus at the age of 7 years, who has had a challenging life both in terms of health and social adjustments for her.
The patient lived in Pune and looked sick, and was always hungry and thirsty. Her father brought her to the military hospital as he was in the army, and a urine test was done for the patient, which turned out to be positive. The whole family was upset after hearing the proclamation "your daughter has diabetes, and she has to take injections to stay alive." At that point in time, urine sugar was the usual screening tool.
The patient was admitted to the hospital, and she spent days in the hospital with injections. After 15 days, she understood that she could not eat without injection and perhaps can never eat her favorite food items (chocolates and sweets). She stayed in the hospital for 3 months. When her parents came to take her home, she was crying as she had started liking the hospital and the caring nurses.
Her parents heard about other "pathies" which claimed to have a permanent cure for diabetes. They rushed her to various "religious saints," quacks and tried alternative forms of medicine hoping for a miracle. One such person made her parents stop her insulin and after nearly 15 days she was rushed to the hospital again. She was diagnosed with diabetic ketoacidosis. The doctor informed her father that her daughter had nearly escaped death.
The patient later moved to another city and her younger brother and sister got admission in a new school, but for her it was a long holiday. As time passed, she wanted to be like her siblings and not just be confined to her home. She convinced her parents for admission in a school, and her parents agreed to it.
She finished her schooling and planned for her graduation from college with new hope and joy. Everyone in the family was reluctant and was not convinced to send her to a hostel for further studies. She was instructed to learn only cooking and perform household works. Her younger brother and sister went on to pursue their higher studies in the United States. After 3 years, she opted for the Nursery Teacher Training (NTT) program, as a compromise, which later turned out to be a boon for her.
She faced several problems in managing diabetes. She was on regular insulin and isophane insulin (NPH) for a long time, which led to fluctuations and poor control. She suffered from frequent hypoglycemic episodes and thus led a poor quality of life. To make matters worse, her family neglected her, and no one was concerned about her future, marriage, etc.
After a long courtship of 5 years, she got married to her partner without the consent of her parents. After marriage, her in-laws were indifferent to her but her husband was very supportive. She became a nursery teacher after completing NTT. She conceived after 2 years of marriage. It was not at all difficult for her to aim for strict blood sugar control, as she was already well motivated and in good control before conception.
Both of her brothers later moved abroad, and her younger sister got married. After 20 years, her mother passed away. She supported her father who realized that she, amongst all his children, was not the weakest, but the strongest of them all. Few years ago, consultation with an ophthalmologist detected early retinopathy. After 9 months of tight blood sugar control, the symptoms were improved.
| Summary|| |
A person can have a good quality of life even with diabetes. Studies have also shown that some people are genetically less prone to develop diabetic complications like nephropathy and retinopathy. Group education can also contribute in managing diabetes. Thus, a person with TIDM can lead a normal life, if he or she is determined to take care.
| References|| |
The effect of intensive treatment of diabetes on the development and progression of long-term complications in insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus. The Diabetes Control and Complications Trial Research Group. N Engl J Med 1993;329:977-86.