Sunday, May 25, 2008


Type 1 diabetes occurs when certain specialized parts of the pancreas, known as islet cells, are destroyed and no longer produce insulin. An adequate supply of insulin is very important, as it helps the body efficiently capture energy from the food we eat, and is necessary to the proper functioning of the body. Type 1 diabetes usually develops in childhood or adolescence (hence the term "juvenile diabetes"), and accounts for 10 percent of all diabetes cases in Canada. Risk FactorsThe causes of type 1 diabetes are largely unknown. Risk factors currently under study include exposure to cow's milk in infancy, and infections of various kinds. SymptomsThe signs and symptoms of type 1 diabetes include:
  • frequent urination in large amounts,
  • excessive thirst,
  • unusual weight loss,
  • fatigue,
  • irritability,
  • nausea and vomiting, and a particular odour to the breath (acetone or sweet).
Also, children with type 1 may not grow as well as other children of the same age. Although, most people with type 1 experience one or more of the above symptoms before seeing a physician, it is possible for altered consciousness (such as a coma) to be the first symptom of type 1 diabetes.

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