Close to 10% of patients diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes are actually living with Latent Autoimmune Diabetes in Adults (LADA or Type 1.5): in the US alone this represents almost 2 million people. I am one of those people and this is my story.


I can't believe I can't get rid of this yeast infection, what's going on. I tried over the counter medication to cure it, the yeast infection never went away. I called my Doctor's office and made an appointment. Judy walked in the room and I told her I had a yeast infection I couldn't get rid of. She checked my glucose levels and the meter read 400. She said I have diabetes and my glucose levels are high that's why I couldn't fight the infection. On June 16, 2004 I was diagnosed with being a diabetic; I was only 23 years old. Judy decided to send me to the lab. The next morning I received the results, fasting blood sugar was 334 and my HgA1C was 14.5. Judy (my nurse) diagnosed me as having Type 2 diabetes. I was initially started on Metformin, which at first worked well to control my blood sugars. Eventually, she decided to send me to a Endo, because my C-peptide levels were low, indicating that I was not making insulin on my own, which is uncommon in patients with Type 2. Also, I wasn't overweight, a more common aspect of type 2 diabetes.


My first visit with Dr. Menon (my Endo) went well. He said he knew I was Type 1.5/LADA, just by looking at me. But, in order for him to confirm his theory, I had to get some blood work done. This was to measure antibodies that are frequently present in Type 1.5/LADA, called GAD-65 (there is also a test called islet-cell antibodies, which can be measured). A week later the results came back, it was confirmed that I have Type 1.5/LADA. My first thought was how did I get this? I don't have a family member with Diabetes. Dr. Menon said, “It is a gene that you have and it could have been triggered by a cold or maybe even stress."


Dr. Menon started me on 5mg of Glipizide and said I would have to be placed on insulin within the next 4 years. He couldn’t tell me when my pancreas would completely stop making insulin. That was 4 years ago...


A lot of things have changed since my initial diagnoses! In January of 2008 I was placed on insulin, my honeymoon ended. I am learning how to live as a Type 1. I know some people say there isn't a difference but to me there is a huge difference!!! I had the chance to live on both side of the tracks. If you asked me pills over insulin, I would choose insulin. I was asked if I would rather have Type 1 and 2 over Type 1.5, wouldn’t trade being Type 1.5/ LADA for the world. I like being the odd ball!

Here are a few Characteristic's of Type 1.5/LADA:


-Adult age diagnoses


- Lean body type.


- More abrupt onset of high blood sugars, at the time of diagnosis, perhaps even DKA.


-Less likely to achieve good blood sugar control with meal planning or oral diabetes medications.


-Positive antibodies against GAD-65 or islet cells.


-Low C-peptide levels – insulin deficiency versus the insulin resistance that is routinely seen in type 2 diabetes.


- Less likely to have a family history of type 2

If you think you have any of the symptoms listed above talk to your health care provider and share your story here too.

Tags: LADA, diabetes, type 1.5

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In many ways it mirors my personal exeperience..............

Ancient history first though........

When I was 14, in the hospital, possable apendicitis (ruled out) and back to normal in a few days. One person there at the hospital told me I would end op taking shots every day.........well I DID NOT.

The next year I came down with hepatitis and while everyone else in the family got it as well, they were home for 2 weeks and then back to work/school. Me I was in the hospital for 5 weeks and a human pin cuosion, then home for 2 weeks more before going back to school (9th grade). I was watched over like a hawk and told to go straight to the office if I did not feel well.

Fast forward to NAVY boot camp and had to be admited 3 times in a row for a URI was not getting over as fast as normal. THen while in 'A' school I got GOMERed (kicked out of the the sick bay Drs office for 10 days. Then the doc saw me outside his door and marched me down to X-ray, saying I gonna PROVE there is nothing wrong with you", then called an ambulance, and off to the hospital where I was seveved Captains-Mast papers for failure to seek medical treatment. I got ver the pneumonia and back to school in about 3 weeks. Poor medical care was one of my official reasons (in a magazine interview) for leaving the Navy..

Fastforward a decade and again....... I got a sore throat, my family doc refused (GOMERed again) to see me for follow-up when I was still not feeling well, in fact even worse. I knew something was wrong, so did my sife and mother-in-law, even my boss at work. He asked if I would see a company doc. That morning I felt better than in weeks, had to go in fasting. Went back to work just in time for lunch, went home and had dinner. The wife and I sat downt o watch TV and shared a Coke. After drinking just 2oz (aprox) I was a mess and my wife called an ambulance. My eyes were burnning like matches in the backs and OX level was low, so they put me on the cardiac ward.

A day or two later the Co doc came in and said "what the hell is you BS doing so high?" He shoved a ADA diet sheet in my face and I had no idea what he was talking about. I sought help from a relative who was a nurse.. I moved, changed jobs etc and to make a long story short had cancer surgery. My new family doc said my diabetes was worse than he thought. I was farmed out to several otehr docs, an oncologist ov course and another who took charge of getting me educated diabetes wise, and of course started insulin.

Diet and exercise did not work, a pill I took for a very short time made me less stable and quit working in short order. I have had to manage my diabetes more like a type-1, even though I was not young enough to be a t-1 or old enough to be type-2. Docs seldom seemed to UNDERSTAND MY diabetes over the years. My records have listed me as type-2, Insulin dependent diabetes and everything excpet type-1 (or any of the other flavors such as LADA or MODY etc.

Long ago I figured I had SOME insulin ability but not enough, just from trying to manage as best I could with some help with a doc that gave a rats behind once in a while. Last year I was sent to the local Diabetes center, aka a dumping ground for patients GPs don't want to manage. There the doc just looked at me and said TYPE-2, but did change my insulins from N & R to Lantus and Humalog. He set my Lantus way too high and humalog to low. I elarned from a pumper how to calculate my BASAL and BOLUS rates, even correction factor and its been the best BS management ever.

TESTS, NO, the DC doc said the C-peptide test would not be valid unless I let my BS rise to over 300, not a good idea since I was still, (am still) trying to recover somewhat from another case of mild DKA.

Bottom line is, i have always been an odd diabetic, still am and have many complications from poor control/management, not to mention not being well understood by almost all my doctors over the decades.

Am I a T-1, T-2, t-1/5 LADA, or something else, who knows?

(*&*( GOMER, a peigeon without a hole...............
JDavid-

You have been through a lot...I can not believe your Dr will not send you for a c-peptied test unless your bg's are over 300...what kind of Dr is that??? can you go to another DR or see an ENDO. If your Dr want to a c-peptide would he do a GAD 65 test??? I have a lot of questions...lol
I put it this way, I have been through a lot of HELLS.........

BTW this doc, the first one I saw at teh diabetes center I believe IS an ENDO!

Me and docs in general do not get along all that great, Do this and do that and if it don't work, its all MY FAULT, not mater how hard I tried. Even when I first landed in the horsepital the first time FOR diabetes, the Co doc assUme'D I KNEW I was diabetic. I have experienced almost every extreeme to some degree except a diabetic coma from DKA. Most of what I know even today I ahve learned through the road of hard knocks......

There have been a couple brighter spots (care realted) such as when I dragged into a docs office and she looked at me and sai, you really don't feel good do you..........DAH! Another time was when all of a sudden my BS was going too high at night. The doc added an evening dose of insulin and added regular to my NPH. Then everything flipped on me and I started going high one morning before lunch and ahd to add some regular to my morning NPH.

There are some things that really TIC me OFF............Go in complain about something feet back ache whatever and get the GOMER treatment. One doc even apollogized later when he found I had an infection, saying he gets scores of patients the complain about their back and NOTHING is wrong with them........well I am NOT THEM. They assUme when thing don't go well YOU (the patient) are not following orders, yet THEY don't bother doing routine things like checking FEET every visit, unless only once in a blue moon visits count.

When I started this road there was no internet, little information avaialable and to be fair even the medical profeession knew little, compared to today. One doc even ignored surgar in my urine..doing me a favor so I would not ahve to DEAL with it. I told my current priamary I am a product of what MY personal experience has been, including dealing with doctors.

I have cought my PCP doc telling me my BP was 110/xx AFTER the nurse had already mumbled earlier it was 148/xx. Same at teh Diabetes Center, it's always 110 over something. Yet I go to an eye doc, my nephrologist, drug store or home tester I almost enver get NOMAL reading and never the same over and over again ether.

Now I always get copies of my labs so I KNOW what the heck is going on...........My current PCP (Dr FlipFlop) back about Jan wrote good kidney function on a copy of my labs, I pointed out that my kidney function was dropping etc. I even cut-n-pasted info from the web and MADE it a topic of my upcomming OV. Then eh ended up sending me to a nephrologist (KIDNEY) doc who then read me the RIOT ACT (about it)....go figure.

Doc seem to tend to do the minimum accepted practice, the easy way out as far as diabetes management. I have TAKEN CHARGE and EDUCATED msyself, almost in spite of them.....BUT they do not complain, in fact I ended up getting compliments about it and how I have done a lot on my own to get better control...........

(*&*( GOMER sez, once a GOMER, wlways a gomer.........
gomer-

I am glad you are taking control and not waiting on your Doc to figure it out! You are doing good!
Thanks for sharing your stories, Cherise and JDavid!! Perhaps others who were misdiagnosed as type 2 will figure out that they need to be tested for LADA from this discussion! Good to raise awareness!

Hi, I was misdiagnosed type 2 back in Aug 2013. It was after a lot of deduction and research that I went back to my endo and insisted on the CPeptide and GAD 65 tests, because of the insane history of auto-immune issues in my family, rheumatoid arthritis, Crohns and Colitis (youngest bro). It just seemed odd that I was in my late 30s and suddenly this ill.

I am taking a lazy day today, so I started work on my at letter to go with my labs, (I will get the labs back tomorrow). I go to thinking more about this LADA aspect, and decided to sit down and review it point by point based on DiabetizME’s post;

Here are a few Characteristic's of Type 1.5/LADA:

-Adult age diagnoses
I was in my early 30s.

- Lean body type.
I was not lean, but not fat either. More like just a few lbs over.

- More abrupt onset of high blood sugars, at the time of diagnosis, perhaps even DKA.
I had not had any real problems till a sore throat I could not recover from and after a couple weeks of hell landed in the hospital. .

-Less likely to achieve good blood sugar control with meal planning or oral diabetes medications.
I worked HARD at exercise and food consumption, It seemed the more strict I was the worse the diabetes was. I rode my bike miles every morning before work, took walks at lunch you name it. What I discovered (for me) was lack of fast carbs made it WORSE and LIMITED fast carbs helped (seems backwards). I also took a pill for maybe a week, less stable and BS level raised. I figured by my own efforts at control I had some but limited natural insulin ability (or a little resistance or both?) I have since less than 2 yrs after Dx had to manage it more like type-1.

-Positive antibodies against GAD-65 or islet cells.
NO TEST done.

-Low C-peptide levels – insulin deficiency versus the insulin resistance that is routinely seen in type 2 diabetes.
NO TEST done.

- Less likely to have a family history of type 2
Mother insulin diabetic, found out AFTER I became diabetic.

If you think you have any of the symptoms listed above talk to your health care provider and share your story here too.

My honeymoon lasted under 2 years and for most of the time HAD to live as a type-1. I also keytone a lower levels than typical for a type-2. I am still saddled with complications from loss of strength etc even with a 8.6 a1c and mixed insulin doses of N + R twice a day. (just not taking enough insulin.

It’s an interesting question/topic…………….

(*&*( GOMER
Hi, I'm new to this forum and fairly new to diabetes. I went though similar symptoms - very difficult to get a diagnosis if you aren't super high. I was aware of it and controlled it pretty well for a while. It was trying to get the right test and dx that I had trouble with. I had two endocrine disorders already - Hashimotos and Vitiligo. Started with frequent urination, extreme thirst (waking up in the middle of the night several times to satisfy both), migraines, hypo episodes. Endo #1 didn't take it very seriously. Said I was "on my way" to becoming diabetic and gave me a meter to check blood sugar - never did any labs. Dr. #2 saw my readings and asked ME if I was diabetic - helllooo! Endo #3 said my 5.9 A1c was "on the high side" and to come back in two months and she would do a full lab workup. I never went back to her. Tried lo-no carb diet, exercise, supplements, etc. It kept it from getting worse for about a year. Finally, I went to Endo #4 who specialized in the thyroid, diagnosed me with "probable" type 1, diabetes for sure. He put me on 500 mg of fortamet twice a day. He told me that my insulin levels were 0 for several labs (prior and current) and the fortamet would not help if it were type 1. He referred me to another Endo (#5) who doubled the medication, ordered some labs - none of which included Antibodies. The lab messed up a couple of the tests and the doctor never even told me/called with the abnormal C-peptide. I'm a thin person and was treated as if I ate my way to diabetes. He went on and on about what causes type 2 and I told him I've been controlling this for over a YEAR now with eating hardly any carbs. I KNOW how to eat and I am LOSING weight and my sugars are going UP. He did not care! Changed to Endo #6 - very large, well known university, nice dr. did all the right tests. The problem was when I went back he confirmed the c-peptide pointed towards type 1, but the ICA antibody was negative. What he didn't tell me in Sept 07 was that he didn't have the GAD antibody test back yet. I was on the maximum dose of Fortamet (2000 mg per day) and and my hemotologist tested my A1c at 8.5 in February. Called Endo#6 after this lab and keytone? message started flashing on my bg meter. The nurse told me to test b4 and after every meal to establish a pattern. I said isn't an A1c of 8.5 a PATTERN (again - HELLLOOOO). She put me on hold for about 20 min. while she checked my chart and told me to come in right away. I did and the doctor on duty told me I was going to have to face the fact I needed insulin. I told him I was ready 6 months ago and his associate was in denial and never gave me the antibody test results. He covered that by saying what good control I had over my diabetes, but now it looked like I needed insulin. ugggg. Now I am on Endo#7 - she is the best! She thinks it's all linked to my other autoimmune problems. I am getting my Omnipod this week and very excited about it. I'm hoping it helps - I've been taking 4 shots a day and just went up a whole % on my A1c (6.5 - 7.6) :( I'm anxious to get started - hoping it forces me to stay on top of it. :) Alice
Alice..............

I thought I was the only GOMER who survived one hell after another with docs........

(*&*( GOMER
Alice-

I have the same thyroid diease you have! hahaha funny how we are all a like! I know you are going to love the omnipod. I have been Podding for almost 3 months and I LOVE IT. I am sorry it took 6 endo's to figure out what was going on with you...Glad all is well...if you have any questions about anything let me know.
Can you tell me the name of Endo#7, as I am looking for the right doc these days?
Thanks!!

I just noticed your comment about vitiligo. That's an endocrine disorder? I've been noticing discoloration for years on my legs in small patches and I tell my endo about and have been to dermatologist and with no result. Its not very noticable to anyone but me so I haven't pursued it. That's very interesting. What is hashimotos?

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