From Upper Marlboro, Maryland, USA:
My son's father was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes when he was 18 years old. He is now 49 years old. The only time he has been to a doctor for care was the time he was diagnosed. He refused to go to the hospital to get regulated, so the doctor insisted that he be able to give himself a shot or he could not let him leave the office. So, he did this and has not been to a doctor since, for this condition. He does not want it written anywhere that he has type 1 diabetes because it would interfere with his pilot license. After all this time without a doctor's care, should he be on the lookout for anything? And, should I worry about him taking my son up in the plane in iffy weather? I have adult onset diabetes on my side of the family and there is type 1 on his father's side. Should I do anything to protect my son from developing diabetes?
I would be concerned about my son riding with someone in an airplane who does not have good control of their blood sugars. Poor control is highlighted by both highs and lows. Low blood sugars at critical times can impair decision making and make flying hazardous. This is all speculation, as it is not known what kind of control he has. It also increases his risk for developing diabetes-related complications, including eye, nerve, and kidney complications. You don't know if he is at risk for stroke, has poor vision, or can even sense when he has low blood sugars.
There is a study to screen for type 1 diabetes and called TrialNet. If you are interested, you can call 800-HALT-DM1 (800-425-8361).
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