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June 5, 2002

Diagnosis and Symptoms

Question from Atlanta, Georgia, USA:

My 11 year old son and I have just left the doctor who is almost positive that my son has diabetes. He is 5 feet 2 inches tall, weighs 292 pounds, his hair and skin are very dry, and he has a rash around his neck. He is scheduled for additional tests. What are some of the other symptoms that might indicate diabetes? Are the symptoms that I mentioned earlier true symptoms?

Answer:

Your son is likely at risk for type 2 diabetes because of his weight and other clinical suspicion your physician has indicated. I wonder whether the rash you mention may be a condition called Acanthosis Nigricans which is a common skin finding in diabetes and usually looks like a brown velvety scale in skin creases especially the neck. I would suggest you review our information on What You Need to Know about Type 2 Diabetes in Children.

MSB