I hope this doesn't come off as morbid, because I'm not! I just started reading John Walsh's fourth edition of Pumping Insulin. On page 14 he lists the "Complication Risk in Type 1 Diabetes." As I read down the list, I discovered that I have had some that I didn't realize were related to the "Big D." for instance, Trigger Finger (DuPuytren's).

Here's the list:
Eyes
Cataract
Cataract removal
Retinopathy
any degree
proliferative retinopathy
lazer treatment
blindness
Frozen Shoulder
Trigger Finger (DuPuytren's)
Kidneys
End Stage renal disease
Nerves
Gastroparesis symptoms
Peripheral neuropathy
Autonomic neuropathy
Bladder dysfunction
Impotence
Diarrhea

The encouraging thing was the report that the lower your A1c's the lower your risk for these complications. So which do you have or have had? What are you doing for each specifically?

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I'm 21 years old and have been T1 for just about 10 years now. I didn't have any complications until this year when I found out I have proliferative retinopathy. I do laser treatments and eye injections for it. I'll be the first to admit it's from poor control! Came to my senses about taking care of myself a little too late... the goal now is to stop anything other complications from happening :)

Complications? Plenty of them here. My list includes frozen shoulders (both of them), bilateral carpal tunnel, kidney disease, among others; and am being monitored for glaucoma. In addition, I have had cardiovascular surgery, three strokes and have been treated for depression.

I can attribute some of this to bad control, some to heredity and some to stubbornness. I am thankful for good healthcare by a caring team, my pump and better eating/exercise habits, and the advice of a damn good therapist.

There is a person in my life who is heading down the same road. I certainly there is common sense and help for her.

Yes, Diabetic Retinopathy. Just had Vitrectomy one month ago. No other complications.

50 years--some good and some not good control stages:
Retinopathy in both eyes, controlled by laser.
And cataracts.
Thyroid--easily controlled with Syntroid.
Ace Inhibitor for kidneys, of course.
I have developed bone spurs in my hands, which my PC says are related to D. But on the palm side, so I don;t worry about them.

I don't know why i read the internet, it just reminds me of all these things that will happen to me. And people always say "tight control is best" etc. well it seems no matter what people get some sort of complications. =[

Actually, there are still some questions as to whether for type 1s "tight" control is really the answer to NO complications. For example, there is still a poor understanding regarding the effect that the loss of other hormones (leptin, c-peptide, and amylin) have on micro- and macro-vascular health. It is possible that some type 1s, even with the best of control, will still develop complications due to the lacking of these other hormones. In addition, many of us with type 1 have pretty wide swings in our BGs. I know that I personally can have days where I go from about 40 to the upper 300s without much effort. It's frustrating, and these swings are thought to cause damage. However, my A1C may still be ok because the A1C is just an average. Lately, my endo has been having me pay closer to attention to these wide fluctuations because she's concerned about them, even though I'm now maintaining an A1C in the 7s.

I have had Type 1 for over 35 years. The only thing that I have experienced on your list is Frozen Shoulder in both shoulders. Both shoulders have resolved and I have 90-95% function in both shoulders. My control in the last 10 years has been pretty good (not perfect, by any means). I was diagnosed long before home BG monitoring, so I had years of what would now be considered horrible control.

I do believe that there are three factors that have helped me tremendously. The first is exercise. The second is the intangible factor of genes and possible minute insulin production as suggested by the Joslin 50 year Medalist Studies. And the third is luck. It seems that some people get complications and others don't. I seem to be in the lucky group.

On the other hand, I have other autoimmune issues which I assume you'd call co-morbitities. They're unrelated to BG levels. I have hypothyroidism and a type of inflammatory arthritis that is autoimmune.

I do believe that all of us have a better chance at good health with good BG levels. However, I am the poster child for daily BG spikes that seem to have not hurt my overall health. Fortunately I have many hours per day with good BG levels.

i hope to be like you when i'm older! ps what are you sugar spikes like?

None yet, but I'm having a chore getting a grip on my A1c levels. Definite mid-life burnout happening here. However, I'm back in the gym and, I think, that's the first step for me. Wish me luck!

After 36 years w/Diabetes, many of my questions have been answered. My A1C in 13 years has never been above 6, yet I do have complications. No wild swings in BG normally. Frozen Shoulder has been my nemesis for the last 1 & 1/2 years. I had surgery to remove bone spurs, and in addition they found & removed Bursitis up along my clavicle. Back into PT, and after so many visits, real progress was being made. Now, insurance refuses to pay for more PT. I would love to have 90% function again, and no longer have pain from it.

If you consider being overly sensitive to the sugar swings which causes me severe emotional and physical havoc a complication then yep. I am still baffled to find very few people that feel so horrible from the sugar swings. It's like I have a different form of diabetes then everyone else or something. That is the part of the condition that plagues me till no end. Other then that I recently developed a pain in my right upper arm below the shoulder which could be related to the diabetes but not sure. I haven't had it evaluated yet but its been bothering me for about six months now. I also have developed pain in the lower area of my index fingers on both hands. I had that looked at by an orthopedic specialist and he suggested it was some form of tendinitis. They generally don't bother me accept if I put pressure in that area. Sex drive is kinda shot and virtually non existent due to the sugar swings. Eyes are good, kidneys are good, no nerve damage yet either. I am in relatively good health and had many years of horrible levels. Its amazing I'm alive and in this good of shape considering but sometimes I wish I were dead from this already. My only real motive to stay alive is be around for a better treatment. I refuse to accept this it for another 30-40 years. I know Dr Faustman is looking over my shoulder!

No complications. Outlasting the doctor.

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