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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Try being a person with Diabetes, either Type 1 or Type 2 in SA - over 300 people at one clinic once a month with 2 nursing sisters and 1 doctor!!
Type 2's do not get free strips - only Type 1's - and there are more complications to 2 than to 1 - you cannot test only once a month - some people look after the motorcar better than their bodies.
Hang in there - your story will inspire so many
File a complaint with the patient advocate and contact DAV..disabled veterans...I am serious.. patient advocates can work wonders. Also, I am service connected TYpe 2 diagnosed by military. THey provided my lantus and NPH insulin. it is doable. Find and endo that can diagnose based on how much insulin you are producing. you do not need the gad or antibodies for the 1.5 diagnosis. If all else fails meet your congressman or senator...and file a congressional complaint. All the wheels at VA stop in motion when a congressional is filed. Good luck.

I agree, insulin is really, really important but for some people it can be helped with exercise. My endo says there are "brittle diabetics" meaning that exercise does lower their blood sugar. For me, I can lower in 10 minutes after a short jog :S But I wouldn't rely on it because I also go really high if I'm stressed! It's a yo-yo.

Splitting the dose really does help too, especially if your digestive system is a bit slow. Water is important too but I wouldn't rely on the kidneys to flush out the sugar, it should be insulin that does that. Thanks for the tips!!

Thank you for this wonderful information - I run a Support Group for people with Diabetes in Durban, South Africa, and would love to share your story - can you give me any further information so that i can check out all the medical implications?
Keep healthy and positive - people like you are an inspiration to so many - thank you for sharing
Hi all-Your stories really sound familiar! I was diagnosed LADA around 36, but I was considered type II since 28-it took 8 years for numerous Drs to figure it out. My biggest battle has been weight gain since starting insulin. I was normal weight before, but I gained 50lbs in 7 months with shots. Since on the pump, I stopped gaining, but losing it is difficult. Still, I'm happy to have things figured out. My A1C's are a bit high(7.4) because I have a very stubborn dawn syndrome. This Spring will be 10 years with diabetes, and (knock on wood) I've been lucky so far as far as complications are concerned. I highly recommend the pump-I have never felt better-it keeps my sugars much more stabilized, and it allows me to have a much more normal and active life.

I am sorry it took so long for you to be DX. I am glad it was caught! I am happy you haven't had an complications! I know you can bring those A1C's down.
Wonderful post Cherise! Thank you for sharing your story. Mick
Hi, I was also diagnosed with LADA in a similar story around infection ( upper respiratory ). My doctor diagnosed me over the phone but did not tell me but urged me to come in immediately for a blood test. He did the test, gave me the "bad" news, called the hospital and had me admitted, all within one hour. My BG was 500.

Following in JDavids foot steps here are the stats:

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

-Adult age diagnoses
I was 40 in Nov 2006. Diagnosed on July 16, 2006.

- Lean body type.
I weighed 140lbs on a 5ft 4 inch body.

- More abrupt onset of high blood sugars, at the time of diagnosis, perhaps even DKA.
I had an upper respiratory infection and was definitely in DKA. It took a week to get the ketones down.

-Less likely to achieve good blood sugar control with meal planning or oral diabetes medications.
I actually had no problem with this. My A1C is 5.1-5.4 and my 14 day average BG is 100.

-Positive antibodies against GAD-65 or islet cells.
Test came back positive.

-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
No one in my family has diabetes of any type. I am still on a honey moon but I am fanatical about control. I use about 18 units of Novolog and 18 of Levemir each day (insulin pens). I live and eat as a Type 1.
This thread get more interesting all the time...........

I ended up in the hospital a 2-3 weeks after a sore throat, and went through HELL in the meantime and still to some degree after. I went on insulin almost 2years later, but it was NO picknic in the meantime.

Well that was over 28/26 years ago............still wnondering what pigeon hole I fit..told by some T-2 others IDDM (no type) and not sure I want to know now, since I am on MDI lantus 2x and humalog 3+/day and BS wise he best ever......(I say BS wise 'cause I am not feeling the reatest and kidneys are in decline)

Next week its the pcp and nephrologist, apt moved up due to labs, then in just over a months time teh diabetes cetner, retina doc, then cardiologist....gonna be a busy late summer fall AGAIN this year.

(*&*( GOMER wonder what percentage here wer precipataed by "just" a SORE THROAT?
I had an extremely sore throat just before I was diagnosed, what does that mean?
I'm a graduate student. We are extremely underpaid, and sometimes take part in other ongoing research trials as "normal controls" and get paid anywhere from $17 to $500 depending on what we are asked to do and what is being tested.

My third year in grad school I signed up to be a normal control for a study on diabetes and lipid metabolism. The study included 3 days of a specialized diet, an oral glucose tolerance test, a euglycemic insulin clamp test, an MRI of the abdomen to determine fatty liver %, skin fold testing to estimate %fatness, and also underwater weighing for even better fat% determination.
We test subjects had to stay in the hospital for 2 nights and would get paid ~$240.

After most of the test was done, they did the OGTT. I didn't get to know the results until the next day, when I was strapped into various IVs and they were performing the insulin clamp test to test my insulin sensitivity. The main researcher walks in- and starts talking to me. I casually mention that I would like to know what they results of my OGTT from the previous day were- she says she will look it up. She finds my file, pauses for a while, and says she will discuss it with me later. I say, why, what's wrong?
She continues to dance around- finally admitting that my OGTT was 240 2 hours later- putting me squarely in the diabetic category, and sorry, but I'm diabetic.

I say you're crazy, I'm not fat!
She says, well maybe the test was screwed up- we're measuring your insulin sensitivity now, maybe if you are still sensitive you aren't diabetic and the test was wrong. my insulin sensitivity was good, not resistant. She offers to re test me- and do another OGTT. I tell her I will think about it and leave.
I'm upset and crying and then after it wears off- I get mad and start trashing her study (as only a another scientist is able to do.)

One of the people I work with is a pediatric endocrinologist. While loudly complaining about what a horrible study it was- I mention my test results. He looks concerned and points out that I really should retest. I think he's crazy, and it's all the bad study's fault, but finally agree- so he orders the tests for me and I get them done.

The tests come back- fasting blood sugar is ~100 and the OGTT is 180.
At this point, I take this to him and ask what the hell is wrong with me- and point out, again, that I am not fat, and have no other signs of metabolic syndrome so I clearly do not have type 2 diabetes. He agrees, and says to have a fasting c-peptide and insulin test done as well as antibodies for insulin, islet cells, alpha gad-65 and IA-2A done.

I do these- the insulin is low but still here, same with c-peptide, and I am very positive for 3 of the 4 antibodies.

At this point, he calmly told me to start seeing an endocrinologist of my own and I did. It's been 2 years since then and I am on MDI but still honeymooning.

Despite arriving at the endo visit the first time, armed with stacks of test results and scientific papers pointing out that am a LADA/ slowly progressing type 1- it still took almost a year to convince the endo that that is what I was.

Oh well- doesn't change the fact that if I hadn't volunteered to be a normal control for a study on campus my life would look very different right now and I suspect I would end up with a hospitial visit to find out.




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