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Year : 2015  |  Volume : 19  |  Issue : 7  |  Page : 64-67

Growth disorders in type 1 diabetes: an Indian experience

Senior Consultant Diabetologist and Endocrinologist, Department of Pediatrics, Apollo, Max, Pentamed and SL Jain Hospitals, New Delhi, India

Correspondence Address:
Anju Virmani
Diabetologist and Endocrinologist, Apollo, Max, Pentamed and SL Jain Hospitals, New Delhi
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2230-8210.155405

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Though children with type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM) are often tall at the time of diagnosis, they may experience growth retardation, pubertal delay or both, which may be due to poor glycemic control, associated diseases or chronic complications. Factors affecting growth include: gender, genetic environment, age at diagnosis, diabetes duration, puberty, metabolic control, and status of growth hormone (GH), insulin-like growth factors (IGFs), and IGF binding proteins (IGFBPs). Insulin regulates expression of hepatic GH receptors, affects IGFs and IGFBPs synthesis by modulating GH postreceptor events, and significantly increases IGF-I bioactivity. Low portal insulin seen in T1DM leads to GH hypersecretion, low circulating IGF-I and IGFBP-3, and high circulating IGFBP-1. Newly diagnosed T1DM patients have decreased GHBP which can be restored with insulin therapy. Growth velocity should be appropriate for the age of the child/adolescent, and the mid-parental height. Height, weight and blood pressure (BP) should be measured and plotted on a growth chart at least 2-3 times a year. Puberty should also be assessed annually. Following precautions are to be taken in T1DM children: checking for pubertal onset and ensuring it is not delayed, testing early when growth falters (hypothyroidism/celiac disease/puberty/other conditions), aiming for best possible metabolic control (multidose regimens, regardless of type of insulin), and encouraging dietary calcium and protein, exposure to sunlight, Vitamin D supplements and exercise.

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