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Type 1 Diabetes mellitus

Diabetes Type 1 is an inherited defect of the immune system triggered by environmental stimuli that results in the permanent destruction of insulin producing beta cells of the pancreas. The problem may be in the on switch of the immune system in which the viral stimuli do not turn the system on. The virus is then allowed to penetrate the beta cell and cause its destruction. Diabetes Type 1 is lethal unless treatment with exogenous insulin via injections replaces the missing hormone.

The cause of Type 1 Diabetes is an inherited defect in the immune system that interacts somehow with environmental factors. These factors may be chemicals or viruses in the environment or possibly other environmental factors that are not yet identified, which team up together to result in the eventual complete destruction of the beta cells and the loss of insulin secretion.

It must be said that there is no known preventative measure that can be taken against Diabetes type 1. Most people affected by this type of diabetes are otherwise healthy and of a healthy weight when onset occurs, but they can lose weight quickly, if not diagnosed in a relatively short amount of time. Diet and exercise cannot prevent or reverse Diabetes type 1.

The most useful laboratory test to distinguish Type 1 from Type 2 Diabetes is the C-peptide assay, which is a measure of endogenous insulin production since external insulin (to date) has included no C-peptide. However, C-peptide is not absent in Type 1 diabetes until insulin production has fully ceased, which may take months. Lack of insulin resistance, determined by a glucose tolerance test, would also be suggestive of Type 1. As opposed to that, many Type 2 diabetics still produce some insulin internally, and all have some degree of insulin resistance.

Testing for GAD 65 antibodies has been proposed as an improved test for differentiating between Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes.

Treatment of Type 1 Diabetes

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