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From Nashville, Tennessee, US:

My 7 year old niece has been diabetic since she was 5 years old. My question is, Do diabetic children tend to be sick more often than children that do not have diabetes (I didn't say normal because what is normal when it comes to children)? My niece seems to be sick more often than my own child who is 5 years old. I am just curious and concerned. Diabetes is a new situation for us and we are all trying to learn everything we can about it.

There is no evidence that young children with diabetes have more illnesses, such as coughs and colds, than children without diabetes. You are right to be careful about defining normal because most children will have many mild viral infections in a year. What is more likely, however, is that everyone associated with the child with diabetes will be more conscious of minor illnesses because more care has to be taken about insulin doses and carbohydate intake. I hope that this sets your mind at rest.


Original posting 12 Apr 96


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