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July 29, 2004

Other, Type 2

Question from Edmonton, Alberta, Canada:

A co-worker's 13 year old daughter was just diagnosed with type 2 diabetes about two weeks ago. Since this diagnosis, her daughter has been eating and throwing up a lot afterward. Why would this happen? This seems unusual to me as she is not sick in any way, except with the diabetes. The family doctor they are seeing has no explanation for this occurrence, except that this girl is extremely obese and her body can't handle the food. That doesn't sound like the right answer to me.

Answer:

This is certainly unusual and it’s not possible to hazard a diagnosis without much more information and an opportunity to examine the patient. The important thing is that someone with specialist knowledge of diabetes should see and assess this girl soon. I would be particularly concerned with a diagnosis of type 2 diabetes just because she’s obese. It’s entirely possible that she has type 1 diabetes and it’s because of ketones that she is vomiting. This would be an extremely serious situation which would require immediate treatment.

KJR