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Diabetes - Type 1 Community
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Avatar universal

Cure for Diabetes Type 1?????

Hi, I just want to know if anybody out there knows of something or someone that will get ride of Diabetes Type 1?????? PLease let me know if you know somthing, anything about getting rid of it! Thanks Anette
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Avatar universal
Hello, Anette.  We are not medical professionals, just parents of diabetics or diabetics ourselves, so always check with your doctor about anything you find here.  There are many companies who claim to have cures for diabetes based in herbs or special pills or something, but they are just hoaxes.  That being said, there are ways to 'cure' diabetes, but they are not easy or cheap.  

One is called an islet cell transplant.  Since the islet cells of a diabetic (which produce insulin) are no longer functioning, the thought is to replace those with functioning cells.  It's a procedure called the Edmonton Protocol, named after the city of the university where the procedure was developed.  Here's a link that explains the procedure:

http://diabetes.niddk.nih.gov/dm/pubs/pancreaticislet/

The procedure can allow diabetics to live without the need for external insulin, but they also must take immuno-suppressant drugs for the rest of their lives.  Read the link for more details.  There have only been like 600 people who have ever had this procedure done, from what I remember, and it's because it is very, very difficult to get enough islet cells to make a successful transplant

Another is a full pancreas transplant.  A functioning pancreas is transplanted from a donor to a diabetic.  This one is more common, but not by much, because of the difficulty of getting donor pancreases.  It is also a very invasive surgery, which limits the number of people who are interested.  But this can also allow a diabetic to live insulin-free, but also having to take immuno-suppressants for life.  

There have been many reports of research where diabetes has been cured in mice or monkeys or some other animal, but those results have never been able to be translated to humans.  There was recently reports on a procedure done in Brazil on kids as young as 14 using stem cells which has reversed the diabetes of 12 of 15 of the kids in the test.  It is a procedure which is not allowed in the US because of how dangerous it is.  It is also only possible for people very early in their diagnosis who are still in their honeymoon.  This is a very dangerous procedure, and it's not a cure for all.  There does create the hope, though, that a cure for all is possible.
Avatar universal
RL has given you some good information. The real problem so far is that the "damaged" immune system attacks any new cells that are put in place via transplant or grown from islet cells. And the autoimmune-suppressing drugs have side effects of their own and cause other serious problems. So with these problems, these procedures are not considered for any but the most seriously ill -- people who risk death if transplants are not done. The many of us who live healthy lives except for having to monitor our glucose levels and take insulin injections are not considered for these procedures. No, there is no cure at this point. A child who is diagnosed as a type 1 diabetic will have this disease the rest of his or her life unless some medical breakthrough happens in coming years.

The good news is that treatments have come so far that it is very possible to live a completely normal life as a type 1 diabetic. I am a very healthy grandma, diabetic since age 12 with no problems. There are many of us who have lived many years with the disease and have normal lives.
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