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August 18, 2002

Other Illnesses

Question from Dallas, Texas, USA:

My child has good control and has had no complications so far. However, With all the talk about the West Nile virus, Is a person with diabetes more likely to have a problem with the virus if bitten by insect that carries it than a person without the diabetes?

Answer:

People with diabetes are not at higher risk of exposure or problems from West Nile or any other virus as long as glucose control is reasonable. Immune systems can be compromised with hyperglycemia for long periods of time, but control has to be pretty terrible. There are too many other things to worry about when one has diabetes, and West Nile virus isn’t high on the list for any special reasons just because of having diabetes.

SB