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High blood sugars and stomach pain in type 1 diabetes
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High blood sugars and stomach pain in type 1 diabetes

Our son has had high blood sugars for over 3 months.  He also has stomach pain and diarrehea.  Blood tests and stool samples have ruled out Celiac Disease.  He's going for an endoscopy and colonoscopy next week.  Has anyone else experienced high blood sugars and stomach pain for extended periods?
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Avatar_n_tn
Dear Scott's Mom,

I am sorry to hear of the distress that your son has been experiencing lately.  I am glad that you have already had him checked for Celiac as that was my first thought.  None of us here are physicians, so please verify any information received on this forum with your son's healthcare team.  Have you looked into gastroparesis?  This is a condition brought on by diabetic neuropathy.  I have checked the jdrf.org website and if you check out this link you can read up on it:  

http://www.jdrf.org/index.cfm?page_id=102394

Is your son on the pump?  Has his endocrinologist addressed the cause of the high blood sugars?  Does he experience the pain when his bg is within range?  Have you tried eliminating dairy products or having him use a lactose tablet prior to ingesting dairy?  Lactose intolerance can be quite painful and the cause of intestinal upset.  I would think that the bg could be elevated if the proper digestion wasn't taking place and the proper nutrients weren't being absorbed by the body.  Just the physical stress alone could elevate bg's also.  These are just a couple of questions that may give some insight into the cause of his digestive system upset.

Please post again and let us know how your son made out.  Good luck to both of you!
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Avatar_n_tn
We have checked to see if scott is lactose interlorant. It appears he is not. he is now at the point that everything he eats causes stomache pains, diarrhea, or a bm wihtin 45 minutes to 2 hours after he eats. He was on the pump, but went back to shots after an er visit on feb.28. his endocrin thought this would give him more control. I call his endocrin every other day. Scott is miserable and has stomache pain all the time. His insulin dosages has been almost doubled and he still has high constant blood sugars. We check his bg every two and half hours and watch him do all his shots. all his doctors(endocrin, g.i. and pediatrician)are waiting to see what the tests results will show on this Thursday. He has also been taking Metformin for about three years, because he was thought to be insulin resistant. His g.i. took him off that April 19 and his endocrin agreed. He also had an upper GI three weeks ago but results were normal. Scott has missed alot of school because of  all of this, but we will have to worry about that later. His face has also been red for about a month, and we were told that is because of the constant high bgs. His stomach pain is constant. Our huge fear that the endoscopy and colonoscopy will come back normal also and then what????????? By the way Scott is 17 and was diagnosed when he was 12. Help if you can.
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Avatar_n_tn
Hello Scott's Mom,
Your Scott & the whole family are certainly enduring a lot of pain ... and worry.

I'm also not a physician, but have had DM for about 35 years, dx'd as a teen.  Until you get the endo & colonoscopy, perhaps you can work with Scott "as if" he has gastroparesis or irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).  By that I mean, read up on the foods & liquids that are particularly difficult for folks to digest and see if he can avoid those.  
Here are some links from reliable sources for you to read & check in with the endo about:
http://www.jhbmc.jhu.edu/Motil/motilfac.html
http://digestive.niddk.nih.gov/ddiseases/a-z.asp (listing of diseases, not a happy read) and focusing on gastroparesis:
http://digestive.niddk.nih.gov/ddiseases/pubs/gastroparesis/index.htm


Perhaps his endo will Rx a liquid food, nutrient supplement since he's likely losing weight that perhaps he cannot afford to.

BTW, it's not unusual for teen boys to require a LOT of insulin as their other hormones start surging.  A mom I know with 2 DM young adults reports taht her son takes over 100 units per day while her daughter takes under 30.  They are both of average weight/build and their endo chalked it up to yet another difference between males & females at this time of life.

In general, when my BG is high, I'm more likely to have digestive issues, too.  Be very careful to check his ketone levels since prolonged high ketones are VERY dangerous.  Hydration is usually sufficient for low, moderate,and even periodic high ketone levels.  Prolonged high ketones REQUIRES a call to the endo/on-call doc and often requires a trip to the hospital.  High levels of ketones muck up our digestive system (and everything else) for a while, too.  Urine test strips for ketones are available at all pharmacies without a Rx.

Good luck and do let us know what you find out.  As scared and alone as you all may feel right now, I'm certain there are hundreds of folks reading this thread who relate to it on a very personal level.
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MY daughter had that problem with diarrhea, and stomach pains. The problem went away when we made sure that the food she ate did not have Manitol or sorbital. These 2 items give her diarrhea within 20 minutes, sometimes so bad that she literally ***** in her pants. Olin also does this to people.

A lot of Sugar free and low carb products have these ingredients. I would suggest that you try to eliminate these items from the diet and see what happens.
Our daughter was diagnosed with diabetes and then developed this problem.  Mo one told us about this problem it was some thing I found out myself and confirmed with the doctors.   This is why we do not give our daughter anything that is sugar free except for soda.   The problem with the diarrhea and stomach pains went a way in days once we chanced her diet.  

Good luck I hope this helps and that it is not something more serious
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Avatar_n_tn
I am also 17 years old, diagnosed when I was 14, and I am experiencing the *EXACT* symptoms as Scott.  I recently increased my insulin to carb ratio to 1:6 and I have had nothing but highs everywhere.  I give correction boluses that do nothing to me.  I'll eat and the insulin does little to nothing to my meals.  It was not this bad until about 2 days ago, before correction boluses fixed this.  Now tonight I have been at about 500-600 consistantly and the insulin is having little to no effect on me.  If you find anything out I would really appreciate if it was posted here, or e-mailed to me @ ***@****.  Thanks a ton.

Nydox
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Avatar_n_tn
By now, I hope you're feeling better.

I just read your msg and the first thing that comes to mind is ineffective insulin. Sometimes (especially in warm weather for us pumpers) our insulin gets a bit cooked in the tubing and/or in the reservoir/cartridge.

If you haven't tried this already, open a fresh vial of insulin, and completely change out your cartridge & infusion set. Drink a LOT of water to help reduce ketones.

If this technique works, then look for ways to keep your pump/tubing out of summer sun & heat. There's a product called a Frio, that's a little pouch filled with dried gel granules. You soak the Frio in water to reconstitute the gel and then put the pump into the gell-filled pouch. Evaporation cools the Frio and keeps the pump at a good, cool temp. If your basal is relatively low, however, still pay attention to not cooking the insulin in the tubing. The website is www.frio.us.com

Frio is a commercial product, but I have no financial connection to it (nor does JDRF). I use it almost daily in the summer. I live in a desert.

Good luck.
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Avatar_n_tn
By now, I hope you're feeling better.

I just read your msg and the first thing that comes to mind is ineffective insulin.  Sometimes (especially in warm weather for us pumpers) our insulin gets a bit cooked in the tubing and/or in the reservoir/cartridge.

If you haven't tried this already, open a fresh vial of insulin, and completely change out your cartridge & infusion set.  Drink a LOT of water to help reduce ketones.

If this technique works, then look for ways to keep your pump/tubing out of summer sun & heat.  There's a product called a Frio, that's a little pouch filled with dried gel granules.  You soak the Frio in water to reconstitute the gel and then put the pump into the gell-filled pouch.  Evaporation cools the Frio and keeps the pump at a good, cool temp.  If your basal is relatively low, however, still pay attention to not cooking the insulin in the tubing.   The website is www.frio.com

Frio is a commercial product, but I have no financial connection to it (nor does JDRF).  I use it almost daily in the summer.  I live in a desert.

Good luck.
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Avatar_n_tn
I have been through all this before. And I can offer some advioce. i am not a medical doctor but have had a personal experience in this field.

I started having the exact same problems after being a diabetic for 5 years (type 1, at age 16)

It took me on a long road that required many tests which were always negative,many days spent in hospitals, until one day i dug up some information on the net and forwarded it to my gastroenterologist, a simple test and bingo, we found the problem.

Get a simple stool fat content test done, and see if the digestive enzyme levels are correct (eg if the stool contains too much fat, there is a deficency that needs to be corrected, urgently)

My pancreas shut down totally. No more insulin production at first, then the bicarbonate production that controls stomach acid shut down as well, lastly it was the digestime enzymes production that gave way. I am on daily medication to control my stomach acid levels, and need to take digestive enzymes with every meal.
I never had pancreatitis and my pancreas is totally normal otherwise. the reason why it stopped working is unknown, but it all started with my type-1 diabetes.

Once this happens, its a mission to control your sugar levels, I used to go from hypo to hyper like 5 times a day. Now its under much better control, but still not in the way that it was when I was just a diabetic. I need to test many times a day and keep tabs on my meals etc.

Hope this helps in some way
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Avatar_n_tn
hI! A lot has been happening with Scott since we last posted. His test results form the upper endoscopy and colonoscopy were all normal. We have read so much about artificial sweetners that we have really cut back on them. I have tried to convince Scott to totally stop using anything with sweetners, but he wants to know what can he drink besides water? He has an appointment to go back to see his gi doctor in July. I told this doctor Scott is STILL HAVING stomache pain, diahrrea and high blood sugars and he said he wants to leave the high blood sugars to Scott's endorcrin.      . I said that we all think th high blood sugars are because of the stomache pain but I'm not sure he gets that. I have called back to get his appointment moved up and we are on the waiting list to do so. In the meantime, his blood sugars are alittle bit better when he has absolutely has no sugar-free stuff. But. he still has some stomache pain every time he eats, and diahrrea at least once a day.
I just read the June 4 posting and will bring that up with Scott's gi doctor. Every once who has responded has been very helpful. I feel we are learning alot, but we haven't quite find out Scott's EXACT problem. Thanks for all info.
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Avatar_n_tn
I have a suggestion, get the doctor to run a 72 hours stool fat test. If the stool fat content is high, then  Scott has the same problem as I have, digestive enzyme deficency. please keep us posted!
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Avatar_f_tn
I have read all of the msgs due to my 13 yr old diabetic daughter having the same stomach problems recently.  We have contacted her endo and has called in a lab request for the digestive enzyme deficiency.  Will try and keep info up to date.  Thank you for all sending in to this Forum.  SueW Las Vegas
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Avatar_n_tn
I note that the previous comments are 2005...!  I too have read them all and am probably at a similar stage to you...  I would love to hear more and get some advice. Kendra (10) couldn't sleep tonight due to stomach pains.  She had reached an 20 reading but after correction has settled around 7 so it is not high blood sugars...


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