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May 28, 2001

Diagnosis and Symptoms, Other

Question from New York, New York, USA:

My son was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes four weeks after an appendectomy. Why was nothing noted in the hospital admission records regarding abnormal urine results or blood testing? Is testing for diabetes before operations routine in hospitals? My doctor says it is.

Answer:

Four weeks is a long time in type�1 diabetes. It is likely that your son was not hyperglycemic at the time of admission or not checked. Many hospitals, now in the name of frugality don’t do a lot of screenings before surgery, especially emergency surgery. Most likely, the glucose wasn’t high or thought of as a “stress” reaction to the appendicitis, if it was checked and a little bit elevated. Today, almost nothing is “routine” any more.

LD