It really varies, Shelly. I don't even think "honeymoon" is an accurate term for LADA because it is a normal part of the slower onset; but let's not argue words! By definition, anyone who is LADA/Type 1 has had a period of time when they could manage without insulin. However some people (especially diagnosed years ago) didn't know they were diabetic until after they passed the honeymoon phase and were insulin deficient. Some of us were misdiagnosed like myself: I was diagnosed Type 2 and put on oral meds which managed my BG fine for 15 months when my numbers started to rise steeply. Some people are diagnosed Type 1 right away and are able to take a very small dose of insulin for a period of time because their bodies are still producing significant insulin (the "honeymoon"). So we've all had different experiences during those time frames. But in general a person with LADA can go anywhere from a few months to a few years before they are running on empty and become entirely insulin dependent. I believe the official definition of LADA is a minimum of six months before the need for insulin.
Hi Shelly: The honeymoon period can last from a few months to many years (years especially in those who are diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes as adults, as your husband was). Several factors that seem to influence that time period are whether the onset was rapid or slow, using even low doses of insulin to achieve tight control as soon as possible, and avoiding high blood sugars that can tax the struggling remnant beta cells. My honeymoon lasted about one year--I was on insulin from the beginning but used very very little, then popped up very quickly. I think these days, with better technology and better knowledge, it's possible and desirable to extend the honeymoon as long as possible.
If "honeymoon" means a period of relatively stable blood sugars (but still with highs and lows), then mine lasted about three months (diagnosed at age 9). If "honeymoon" means needing little to no insulin, then I never had one.
i was diagnosed in nov 2011 and am still on very low doses of insulin. was diagnosed as t1. i thought i might be lada, but guess not, as had to have insulin immediately. my doses have gone up and down since then.
I am close to three years now, but mine seems to be dwindling. However, I still take a very low dose of basal and bolus insulin.
I got my diagnosis in 2007 I think, and I am still producing insulin. Some people still produce tiny amounts of insulin for the rest of their lives, but not enough to go without injections.
I am not sure what people really call the "honeymoon" does it mean that you don't need any insulin at all or just very little insulin?
I am new also. My son was diagnosed with LADA in October 2010. I don't know exactly what he is taking but he told me he takes 3-6 units of insulin per meal, depending on how much exercise he has and what he is eating. His doctor had him begin insulin, even though he could control his blood sugar with diet, because it would help preserve beta cell function. It was my understanding most people with LADA are insulin dependent within two years of diagnosis but it can take up to ten years (rare).
What seems to be helping my son keep his insulin requirements low is Low Dose Naltrexone, which stimulates the body to produce more regulatory T cells to call off the attack. He began LDN a year ago and has had no deterioration since.
It was recently on the news that Harvard scientist are working on a hormone called Betatrophin that stimulates beta cell production in mice. There should be human trials in a couple of years and maybe on the market in five years. It sounds like you need to have some beta cell function for this hormone to work. If the diabetes is caught early enough, insulin would not be needed. So a person should do what they can to preserve some function. Starting insulin early would help. LDN is not approved for stopping auto immune attacks in diabetes but it is in the third phase of trails for MS and Crohn's disease. It is very safe and cheap, so it might be worth a try too.