Juvenile Diabetes or Type 1 Diabetes
Type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM) is often referred to as juvenile diabetes because it usually is discovered in childhood or as a young adult. It also can be found later in life. Type 1 diabetes is a chronic disease that doesn’t allow the cells in your pancreas to make insulin, a hormone that helps sugar (glucose) enter your body’s cells and produce energy. When you can’t produce insulin, the sugar accumulates in the blood. The accumulation of insulin creates inflammation and abnormal protein production, which may lead to complications such as heart disease, stroke, blindness/vision disturbance, nerve damage (neuropathy) and increased risk of infections.
You are at risk for Type 1 diabetes if you inherited specific genes related to Type 1 diabetes. By properly monitoring and managing the insulin levels in your blood, you may avoid complications from the disease.
Symptoms, Diagnosis and Outlook
Symptoms of Type 1 diabetes can include:
- Blurred vision
- Frequent urination
- Increased thirst
- Nausea, vomiting, stomachache
- Weight loss
The experts at Penn State Health will take a complete family history and run the following tests to diagnose Type 1 diabetes:
- Blood glucose levels
- Glycosylated hemoglobin (Hemoglobin A1C)
- Ketone levels
- Autoimmune protein/antibodies blood test
Experts in Care
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Why Choose Penn State Health for Care
Type 1 diabetes can affect many different organs in your body, so it is important to have a team of doctors dedicated to creating a personalized treatment plan for you. The Division of Endocrinology at Penn State Health offers a team approach to diabetes management involving experts and experienced physicians, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, certified diabetes educators and dietitians. Our diabetes team works with specialists from other departments including cardiology, neurology, ophthalmology and podiatry to provide you with an individualized treatment plan tailored to you and your family.
Comprehensive Treatment Options
At Penn State Health, we provide comprehensive treatment options to help manage your diabetes and any complications, and we offer new, advanced treatments as they become available, including:
- Consultations with our diabetes care team
- Clinical monitoring for complications
- Insulin treatment (injections and pumps)
- Glucose monitoring (meter and continuous glucose monitoring, or CGM, device)
- Integrated insulin pump and CGM therapy
- Education classes
- Diabetes nutrition
- Exercise and lifestyle recommendations
Through our diabetes education program, our certified diabetes educators offer individual or group training for insulin use, whether you choose injections or an insulin pump. Our team will teach you how to manage and use your CGM device or your automated insulin delivery system (artificial pancreas). Our certified dietitians offer individual and group sessions for dietary management of diabetes, basic carbohydrate counting and advanced carbohydrate counting. Our education program will help you live a healthier life.
Remote Monitoring of Your Diabetes
Our goal is help you manage your diabetes well so that it doesn’t disrupt your daily life.
We teach you how to manage your insulin levels, and we offer remote monitoring so you can share the information from your insulin pump or your CGM device with our team of physicians and advanced practitioner providers. We can review the data and offer guidance and changes to your insulin without the need for an office visit. Through our patient portal, you have 24-hour access to your diabetes care team.
Penn State Health recruits patients for TrialNet, a multicenter research study evaluating treatment options to prevent/delay T1DM in people with risk factors for or a family history of T1DM who have not yet developed it. Our expert clinical research team includes dedicated research nurses, clinical trial coordinators and data analysts. Click here to learn more about new Penn State Health clinical trials..
Support groups provide an opportunity to share your feelings and connect with other patients and caregivers who are experiencing similar struggles.
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