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October 16, 2007

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Question from Roselle Park, New Jersey, USA:

My son was diagnosed at just under 18 months of age. His A1c has ranged from 9.7 to 8.2. In the second grade, he scored 150 on the OLSAT (Otis-Lennon School Ability Test) verbal. In fourth grade, he scored 129 and in fifth, only 121. Can these declining scores show some sort of cognitive damage due to poor blood glucose control?

Answer:

This is a good question, one we don’t often receive. I would only think it if he were unable to take the test because of a low or very high blood sugar, or if he had multiple episodes of hypoglycemic seizures, could one blame diabetes. Most especially, if the testing time was troubled by glucose management, then I would think the results were not valid. You might consult a clinical psychologist for a true evaluation. School performance, as measured by these tests, especially from ages seven to 10, certainly can change. For any testing situation, the ability to monitor glucose and give snacks and insulin helps ensure the best result.

LD