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Diabetes - Type 1 Community
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Avatar universal

Gran Mall or Maul Seizure

I recently lost my so; he was 38 yrs. old, had Diabetes, Type One ahd he was on a waiting list for a kidney transplant for the last 2 years.  My question is, what is a gran mall (spelling?) seizure?  This is what happened to him and as he was falling he hit his head; now to give you a little background; he was having trouble with getting a lot of reactions due to (I'm sure) not being able to eat as he should.  He just started using a pump.  We figure he had a slight seizure and was sick to his stomach, recovered and then went to refrigerator to get something to stabilize his blood sugar and thats when he had gran mall.  What I'm not to clear on also is, did this kill him instantly?
5 Responses
Avatar universal
I'm very sorry for your loss.  It's every parent's nightmare to lose their children.

Here is the Mayo Clinic's info page on grand mal seizure.  

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/grand-mal-seizure/DS00222

I'm not a medical professional, just the parent of a kid with diabetes, and I don't know all the specific of your son's case, so I'm resisting saying exactly what happened to him.  But that site does describe the condition pretty well.

Again, I'm very sorry for your loss.
Avatar universal
Was he home alone?  I ask this, because it sounds like he could not help himself and there was no one there to help him.

It sounds like his blood sugar went too low and he went into a diabetic siezure.

I have had these before and You don't know what is going on around you and you can do some very strange things and you can NOT help yourself when your blood sugar gets too low. Drs call it a siezure, but it is really caused from low blood sugar and not getting enough glucose into your body for the insulin.

I believe many diabetics have died from Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) and the medical people hide it as stating he died of natural causes (diabetic), when it was really low blood sugar.  Yes, insulin can and will KILL you if it does not have some glucose to use in the body.

I also believe that the medical and pharmaceutical communities will not acknowledge that people are dieing from low blood sugars, because it could hurt their very lucritive business of making sure you keep your blood sugar low with their drugs.  Yes, I know that more people have lived very long and productive lives due to insulin (I would not be alive today without insulin), but we must start acknowledging the truth of these deaths.

I have always believed it is better to have high blood sugars and die 10 years younger than you should from diabetic problems than to DIE today from a LOW Blood Sugar.  Of course the people in the diabetic community will say I am stupid, but wouldn't it be better to die tomorrow at 58 with diabetic complications than to die today at 38 from a LOW Blood Sugar.  All it takes is one low blood sugar to KILL you (I know, I just about died from one, it was not pretty at all).

They need to start documenting all of the diabetics that are dieing from Low Blood sugars, but they would rather hide it as "died from natural causes (diabetic)".

quatlox
Avatar universal
I have to disagree with some of what quatlox wrote about it being better to have high blood sugar than low. I DO agree that a severe low can kill, but high glucose levels kill much more cruelly by causing complications that can make the person suffer horribly for years. The obvious truth is that NEITHER situation is good. It is very possible these days with all the new possibilities as far as insulin types and delivery types to keep a very normal glucose level without dealing with severe highs OR severe lows. From what I have read, the reason that "cause of death" cannot be listed as "low blood sugar" has nothing to do with medical people hiding anything, but it is because the glucose levels are not the same after a person dies... an accurate glucose test cannot be done after a person dies, so it is impossible to know what that level actually was at the time of death.

I do agree that severe low glucose levels can be horribly dangerous and are not to be taken lightly.  Yes, seizures do happen after a person's glucose drops too low. And the person is unable to help himself at that point. He may have been able to get to the refrigerator, but by this time, most people's muscles cannot function properly and it is very difficult to think clearly enough to go get some juice or food, much less open a container or even hold the food.

It is VERY important for all insulin-dependent people to work hard to keep their hypoglycemia warning symptoms working well. In time, after repeated lows, a person's warning symptoms can totally disappear. But tests in the past 6 years or so have proven that those symptoms can be brought back by a combination of avoiding ANY lows for a brief period of time (some studies say 2 weeks) and also by making sure that if a low DOES happen, the person opts for the very quickest possible fix (i.e., juice or sports drink rather than a fat-laden candy bar).
Avatar universal
First, I want to thank all who replied to my question.  To JDRF-Team RL, thank you for Mayo address I will look into it after I finish here and thanks for your sympathy.

To qualtlox:  In answer to your question, yes he was alone & I'm sure that didn't help the situation.  Also I'm sure his blood sugar was too low therefore the reaction, however you missed one important fact in my question, please don't assume that the medical community advised him to keep his blood sugar low, as I stated He was having trouble eating which is a big "NO-NO" when you are using insulin but because of needing a kidney transplant he was on a lot of different medications and I'm sure that greatly affected his appetite and the cause of death was probably related to the low blood sugar but I'm sorry I don't agree with you as his doctor was pleased the last time he saw him as his blood sugar was 120.

To Forum-VOL-SG:  Thank you for your very informative response
Avatar universal
McCauley3rd,

I am sorry I addressed such a response to you without taking your feelings into consideration.  I just get so very upset when someone dies of a low blood sugar that could of been prevented (I believe all lows can be prevented). I want to do anything to avoid the LOWS, even if it would mean to have a raised Blood glucose level. I in no way ment for someone to keep their BS super high, but just high enough to stay out of harms way.

It is really a full time job trying to keep my BS between 80 - 120 and I test my BS about 6 times a day.  I still have lows, but I have enough time to do something about them before I get into trouble.  I read somewhere in a diabetic article that the average diabetic has about 3 lows a week and we must be very aware of what is happening in our bodies or we will end up on the short end of the stick.

My sincere sympathy goes out to you for the loss of your loved one.

quatlox
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