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April 26, 2001

Community Resources

Question from Lorain, Ohio, USA:

Can a 50 year old professional man with type 1 diabetes qualify for disability or retire on disability because the diabetes makes him tired all the time and unable to work a normal job? He has worked his whole life and now finds that he must nap during the day. He has made "excuses" for not being at work because he was too tired to get out of bed. He is a county social worker who takes insulin injections several times during the day.

Answer:

I don’t know if you “represent” the patient or the disability insurance. If this person has worked all his life with diabetes, I would be concerned that something new has developed (I am assuming the type 1 diabetes is not of recent onset). I would be concerned about the development of either thyroid problems, heart problems, kidney problems, depression, or something else unrelated to diabetes. If the diabetes is under reasonable control, it does not usually cause such extreme fatigue. I suggest this person discuss his extreme fatigue further with his physician.

TGL