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From Baltimore, Maryland, USA:

My husband has had Type 1 since he was 10; he is now 31. We have 4 children.

Would any of them have a chance of getting diabetes? Our oldest child is a boy and he is 10 and weighs 120 pounds and is 55" tall. He gets moderate exercise. He is on a baseball team, rides his bike, he loves to be outdoors and I feel he doesn't overeat. Is there a good chance that he might be the one to get diabetes? My husband's father has Type 1, also since his mid 20's.

A doctor once told my mother-in-law that if one parent has diabetes that the 5th child would most likely get it. My husband was the 5th child after his mother miscarried her 4th. The doctor told her that after my husband was told that he had this condition. Would that be true?


The risk of a child of a type 1 diabetic father is around 6%, not terribly likely, and this risk is the same for each child, independently from the birth order. There is no rule at all that the 5th offspring of the parent should be more prone towards diabetes.


Original posting 24 May 1998
Posted to Genetics and Heredity


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Last Updated: Tuesday April 06, 2010 15:08:58
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