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January 29, 2006

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Question from Wilmore, Kentucky, USA:

My 17 year old son was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes less than one week ago. His initial glucose was 243 mg/dl [13.5 mmol/L], his A1c was 11.1, and his C-Peptide was "normal". I understand the significance of the glucose and A1c, but I thought that all type 1s had little or no C-Peptide. I don't understand how his body could be making the insulin but not responding to it. Could you please given me more information on this? Does this mean that if they can get the body to respond to the signals to release the insulin, he may someday be "cured"?

Answer:

Unfortunately, he won’t be cured but at his age, with positive C-Peptide, he may have a more prolonged “honeymoon” period with some stability in his management of glucose levels. The older the person when diagnosed, the more likely there is some residual insulin production and C-Peptide is one measure of how much insulin is being produced. You should be able to get more information from your diabetes team who know your son best.

SB