May 31, 2009
Diagnosis and Symptoms
Question from Milton Keynes, United Kingdom:
My young daughter was born with a low blood sugar level but hasn’t had it tested “officially” since. We have spoken to the doctor about some concerns that we have had and they sent a letter to her consultant who didn’t really seem to listen. Now two and a half, my daughter has had problems since birth, including urine infections which have been looked into. We are concerned because she passes urine very often and a lot at nighttime. She wants to drink and eat all the time. The eating has been going on for the past eight weeks. Her drinking has always been like this. Her weight is okay. She has night sweats and disturbed sleep. She is a bit hypoglycemic. When she wakes, she can sometimes be very unsteady on her feet and shakes a little bit. She catches every illness that’s going around. We were getting frustrated with not being listened to so we bought a kit and checked her blood sugar, which was 11.3 mmol/L [203 mg/dl] fasting. At 12:20 p.m., her blood sugar was 6.6 mmol/L [119 mg/dl]. Additional readings were 4.4 mmol/L at 9:30 a.m.; 7.4 mmol/L [133 mg/dl] at 8 p.m.; 3.8 mmol/L [68 mg/dl] at 10 a.m.; 7.7 mmol/L [139 mg/dl] at 10 p.m.; and 4.6 mmol/L [83 mg/dl] at 8 a.m. I know it may sound strange that we brought our own kit, but you do your best for your children. Are these readings okay or do you think she may have diabetes?
It is unclear if she has diabetes or hypoglycemia or some combination. Certainly the higher values you report in your query are distinctly abnormal. So, please go talk to a pediatric endocrinologist or pediatric diabetologist. It is best to do some serial profiles including just before breakfast, lunch and dinner plus one to two hours after each of these three main meals. If you do this for three or four days, the information will help the endocrinologist decipher what is going on. Also, when she has symptoms, including excess urination, night urination, enuresis, excess thirst, this is also a good time to check the blood glucose levels.