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Symptoms of diabetes before you get the raging thirst?

(16 Posts)
BalloonSlayer Fri 24-Mar-17 12:57:44

Everywhere I look for information it says the symptoms of diabetes are being incredibly thirsty. But I know someone who was unwell for almost a year, had normal blood tests etc, before those tell-tale symptoms finally started and it was obvious what had been wrong all this time.

For my own reasons I don't want to ask them. But I was wondering. It's not about me BTW but one of the DCs.

TimTamTerrier Fri 24-Mar-17 13:07:40

I have type 2 diabetes and have never had thirst, except when you would normally expect to be thirsty (i.e. when I haven't had enough fluid or it's a hot day). I'm surprised that the person you know had normal blood tests as that's pretty definitive for diabetes, perhaps they had some other endocrine disorder and then developed diabetes. Taking Metformin for diabetes can often have a positive effect on other endocrine problems, when I started taking it most of my PCOS symptoms cleared up.

If you're worried about your DC then a pee strip should show if there is excess glucose in the urine or get a blood test. I might set your mind at rest.

vitaminC Fri 24-Mar-17 13:12:11

Extreme thirst is a symptom of type 1 diabetes, not type 2, which it sounds like your friend has.

JennyOnAPlate Fri 24-Mar-17 13:12:17

How old is the dc in question? If they're displaying any symptoms of diabetes please take them straight to the gp. Type 1 diabetes (which is more common in children than type 2) can make you very ill very quickly.

BalloonSlayer Fri 24-Mar-17 14:00:02

Thanks guys

Sorry didn't mean to have been so vague.

Friend had one high-ish blood sugar result, during investigations into not being well, so had to go back and do a fasting blood test, which was fine. A year or so later had all the classic symptoms and it was obvious what it had been all along. GP was blush

DC is 16.

- very thin (but is a teenager, so . . .)
- very tired (but is a teenager, so . . .)
- occasionally dizzy and unsteady
- gets bad abdominal pains every few weeks, sometimes with vomiting, sometimes with diarrhoea, sometimes neither. Normal appetite throughout all this. No cause/reason identified.
- odd mood swings (but is a teenager, so . . .) which I can sometimes link to low blood sugar (& I know this is counts as proof of no diabetes)
- had definite acetone breath during last bout of stomach pain/vomiting

My Dad - skinny as a rake his whole life - died from type 2 diabetes and just before his final admission to hospital had terrible stomach pains and acetone breath - this is what made me wonder.

DC has had recent full blood tests (though not fasting) which were all OK I presume as nothing was said otherwise.

I think it's remembering my Dad which has made me twitchy about the acetone breath. Don't want to mention it to Dr without a bit of background knowledge for fear of looking like Munchausen style loony.

Devilishpyjamas Fri 24-Mar-17 14:06:08

Having pear drop breath isn't unusual during vomiting - esp if your son hasn't eaten much. My eldest used to get bouts of cyclic vomiting and always had pear drop breath.

I think given the symptoms your son ought to be seen though - to see what it might be.

5moreminutes Fri 24-Mar-17 14:07:45

Does she eat well? I'd also think about whether she could have an eating disorder and be anaemic and eating so little she's in ketosis...

Either way I would say she might need more blood / urine tests - things are very often missed, you sometimes have to keep going back and seek second / third opinions.

BalloonSlayer Fri 24-Mar-17 14:27:24

Thanks again guys

Yes I did read it was not unusual when vomiting, so it's good to have that reassurance.

It is being investigated . . . they are focused on stomach/bowel problems though and I wondered whether it could have another cause.

I don't think eating disorder, though 5. Again I haven't given all the info - sorry. It's DS1 and he does like his food. He has severe food allergies so for years I have blamed his skinniness on his restricted diet, ie often skips lunch at school as canteen have nothing he can eat so he goes without (or rather they have one thing he can eat but he doesn't want it/has become bored of it, and goes without). It's only recently that I have started wondering whether it might be something else. He has grown 3 inches in the last 2½years but only put on 2½ pounds. confused I could manage that over a good weekend! grin

He has just gone upstairs with lunch - a full rack of ribs with nothing else - 750 cals according to the packet!

allowlsthinkalot Sat 25-Mar-17 23:02:47

If you are concerned about diabetes you could buy a glucometer and randomly Che k his blood sugar. Or you could ask for a blood test to measure hba1c to see how his levels have been over the past three months.

Diabetes in children is usually type 1, which has a more sudden onset.

MichaelSheensNextDW Sun 26-Mar-17 06:40:22

The issues you describe would make him very susceptible to significant nutritional deficiencies such as iron and folate, has he had levels tested?

BalloonSlayer Sun 26-Mar-17 17:34:59

Thanks allows and Michael.

I don't know if i am concerned about diabetes, that's the problem, really, hence me wondering.

I try very hatd to make sure he has a balanced diet. Luckily, unlike my other DCs, he likes his veg. He has had full blood tests which were all OK which gave me a bit of maternal pride.

I expect I am fussing and worrying too much, but he has missed quite a bit of school and I wish we knew the root cause.

Mumsnet is great - I can chew it over with you guys and don't have to make a tit of myself in front of a doctor. Am really grateful flowers

BIWI Sun 26-Mar-17 17:40:38

Has he been tested for coeliac disease?

Some info about it here

Are there certain foods that aggravate the symptoms? (Beyond the allergies, of course)

BalloonSlayer Sun 26-Mar-17 17:54:39

He's been tested and it's not coeliac, thank goodness, all he needs is another food group he can't eat.

He had a diagnosis of allergic colitis due some bleeding he had a couple of years ago and v high calprotectin levels. I had attributed these stomach pains also to allergic colitis until it dawned on me that I was 99.9% sure he had had nothing he is allergic to prior to the attacks. (And when he did have something with a trace in he got the usual tingly throat, itchy streaming eye reaction and no stomach problems. )

Hence me wondering whether :

He' s allergic to something new ( had coeliac test - isn't)


He's got crohns or ulcerative colitis, previous positive test would back this up, but tested and isn't. Thank goodness. And it doesn't seem "bad" enough to be one of those anyway.

So I am a bit stuck. Probably IBS, I suppose, but there doesn't seem to be a trigger.

MichaelSheensNextDW Sun 26-Mar-17 19:21:47

I'd push them to look more closely into a possible autoimmune root cause.

BIWI Sun 26-Mar-17 19:27:01

The trouble with IBS is that it covers a multitude of different symptoms - IME it's often what you get diagnosed with when other things have been ruled out!!!

Glad it's not coeliac/colitis, though.

katymac Sun 26-Mar-17 19:28:50

If you are getting blood tests anyway ask specifically for vit d & B12 as they have random symptoms sometimes

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