Diabetics: What were your symptoms before diagnosis?

I’ve been undergoing tests because of some health issues and one of the things my Dr. is suspicious of is diabetes. I am awaiting results right now.
I know what the symptoms are according to the world of medicine but I am curious of what some of you experienced that led to your diagnosis.



I have a huge family history of Type II. So I was being tested on a regular basis for a while and just kind of let it go.

Over the course of a year or so I went from 225 (and flabby) to 175, but blamed my workout for it. I was always drinking lots of water (still do) but never felt “excessive thirst”, or got overly fatigued or any of the regular symptoms they run you through.

One summer, I was having heart palpitations an got checked. Blood tests came back and my fasting glucose was 288.

Started on an oral med (Amaryl), and controlled diet. I had some high readings this past winter - I have been a good little diabetic, but my glucose was climbing anyway, so I’m shooting Lantus now, and a pretty small dose and I’m fine again. In fact, over the past two months I’ve gone from 24 units/day down to 14 now.

Advice if you’re diagnosed?

  1. Finger your…I mean prick your finger a few times a day. Learn what effect certain foods and times of day have on your readings.
  2. Don’t cheat, it only hurts you.

Mr Bus Guy

I’m glad to hear you’re taking care of yourself. One question for you, when and if you do eat something that sends your sugar levels up, how do you feel?
Do you only know it went up because of your blood sugar reading or can you tell by some physiological response?

I went, practically overnight, from peeing twice a day to peeing every hour on the hour, including getting up a couple times in the middle of the night.

I was tired all the time.

I lost 25 pounds in 2 weeks.

My underwear started falling off of me (I had never lost weight before and didn’t realize what that meant; I thought I still weighed 195 and I was down to 170…).

If I forget to take my insulin with a meal, about an hour later I feel feverish, stupid, uncoordinated and sleepy.

Pretty much always when you eat your blood sugar goes up. Generally anywhere from 40-70 points depending on what you ate and how much. Processed starches are the worst, they cause your sugar to spike up fast, making your body respond by attackiing with insulin which causes the glucose reading to dive again, which makes you feel hungry, and then you eat again, usually more of the same crap.

Unless my sugar goes DAMN high, like over 200 (yes I enjoy a piece of cake or the giant popcorn at Loews now and then), I don’t feel any different. What I, and I think most diabetics learn to know is the feeling when it’s low. I can generally tell you when it’s low, within 5 points of what it’ll be reading. Anything much below 90 and I can feel the jittery, annoying clammy feeling that says “whip out the meter and get some food you moron”.

Yeah, that’s what’s giving me the heebie jeebies (I can’t believe I just said heebie jeebies.) I’ve lost 16 lbs in 6 weeks, without trying, am exhausted like I’ve never been before and get sick if I don’t eat every couple of hours. If I do eat something highly sugary or starchy, I feel like I have a hangover. It’s odd as hell. I also am constantly thirsty and piss like a racehorse throughout the day. Evening and nighttime is the worst. I’ll go before I crawl into bed then 15-20 minutes later I’m going again in voluminous quantities then hey! I go about once or twice during the night.
Oddly too, I’ve developed an aversion to sugar. The thought of a soda or a piece of cake makes me want to vomit, I suppose since when I do, on rare occassion, indulge, I feel like ass.

I’m not thrilled with the prospect of diabetes but I’d rather find out what’s making me feel so crappy all the time and get it treated than to not know at all and have my body in such disarray.

This layman’s going to say you’re going to get the news, based on your symptoms.

I don’t get much of the sugar hangover, but I have. I usually try to avoid it, but yeah it comes I’ll admit.

We should have a poll - what will be Chau’s fasting number?

I’m gonna take a shot at high 200’s. Say 299, just to cover the under 300 score.

And though I make light, Chau - you want the news so you can begin to treat it and feel better.

Same here with the ‘pissing like a racehorse’ diagnosis…

I’ve always drunk lots of fluids so going 4-5 times a day has been normal since I was a kid. But when I started having to go every hour on the hour, even at night, then I knew I had a problem.

Of course I made things worse that first day when I was extra thirsty by my choice of drink. I was managing a health food store at the time and we had just gotten a new brand of rasberry soda that was quite yummy. So without thinking about what I was doing, instead of drinking my normal water, I downed 3 one liter bottles of it that day (liquid [del]ambrosia[/del] sugar). It wasn’t until that night when I was still having to pee every hour, all night long, that I realised I had a problem.

In the months leading up to that day, I had also noticed occasional blurry vision, but going to my eye doctor found nothing wrong.

Doing research, I figured out it was type II diabeties, made an appointment with my doc on Monday (it was Friday night that I was up all night) and cut out all sugar and starches from my diet for the weekend.

On Monday I walked into the docs office. He asked what was up? I said that I think I have type II diabeties. In a condescending manner he said that’s one hell of a self diagnosis. I just held out my arm and said test me doc. … A couple days later he apologized and said I was right on the money. My blood sugar that Monday was off the charts, somewhere over 500, even after two days of no sugar or carbs.

He tried to put me on a strict diet … and then I told him of my own self imposed diet and he shut up. A couple of months on some meds to get my sugar back under control and then I was free of them for several years. Just diet and self control kept my numbers good for several years. Then last year my numbers started creeping back up despite my efforts so I reluctantly started taking Amaryl (minimum dose) and they’re back where they belong.

Fatigue, urination, thirst. Explained to the doctor, and when looking down my throat he asked if my mouth was always that dry. I had no clue of any change.

Ah, the vision, yes forgot about the vision. My eye doc wouldn’t examine me after my diagnosis til I was stable.

500 after two days of fasting? Damn. That’s all. Damn.

Here’s one - if I test first thing in the morning, as I fall out of bed, and get - oh let’s say 115. Then don’t eat a thing, but wait an hour or so, it’ll be upwards of 30 points higher. That was vexing me at first, I thought I was waking up that high, til I started testing right off the bat.

The nurse called it “Dawn Syndrome” (informally I think). What happens is your body wakes up (long before my brain) and says “hmm, morning I must have glucose”. But there isn’t any fresh food to break down into glucose, so it raids the liver for glycogen, which raises your reading.

Well, if you’re going to be betting on my fasting number, I should know on August 12th so I will keep you posted. May the best Doper win. :wink:

**EarthStone ** , yeah, I have to say, I’ve felt this way for over a year and went to my doc last summer with similar but not as extreme, symptoms. I asked for a fasting glucose test and she said, “I just think you’re hypoglycemic, you don’t need a test. Avoid sugar and eat a lot of protein”

Well now that these symptoms have effectively ruined my summer I sought the advice of a different doc. First thing he said was that I needed a complete blood work-up and he was pissed that my other doc didn’t order it two weeks prior to seeing him. Guess who my new doc is?

Re: Blurry Vision, this is something I’ve been noticing the past two months but I just thought it was dry eyes from having LASIK done two years ago. Now I’m beginning to wonder.

I know something is wrong with me. I just want to know what it is.

If you’re impatient, find a diabetic friend and ask him/her to jab your finger. It’s not lab-accurate, but you’ll get a good idea. Unless you’re WAY high, most monitors jujst explode and start yelling at you if you’re reading over 300 or so.

Frequent peeing/rehydration. I was up near 200lb but didn’t lose any weight. After a week or two I went to the doctor for blood work –my fasting sugar was 265.

That was 3 years ago. Within a year, thru a program of Glucophage, modest low carb eating and moderate exercise (mostly walking), I took off 30lb and got my A1c’s below 6.0.

Then I hit “the anniversary wall” – that stage, along about your first year with the Big D, when you go from “Hey, this new lifestyle isn’t so bad” to “Omigod! My life as an eater as I once knew it is OVER! AIEEEEEE!!!1!”

Luckily, the “reaction” (open face; insert food) only put 6-8lb back on me. But those 6-8lb alone, plus judicious indulgence in (mostly no-sugar-added) treats, were enough to slowly r-a-i-s-e my A1c values from below 6 to creeping-toward-7. At this point, despite upping the Glucophage dosage, that’s where they remain.

I was always a “don’t do anything till you have to” kind of guy — always hated making changes for change’s sake. Before the Big D I lost 15 lb and was miserable doing it. It all went back on. And then some. I owed my weight gain (65 lbs from high school to my mid 30s) to my personality – “don’t do anything till you have to.” I needed to really be sick to finally get the weight off, which is a damn shame.

And I’m still stuck with my personality. And seeing as this is a progressive disease, I am afraid I am going to have to get used to putting some real effort into the “might be’s” and the “just in cases.”

I made the lifestyle change. It took, too. Now my body has upped the ante, and I show no signs of wanting to change again. I just hope I don’t wait until I get sicker, and have to.

My husband had an ingrown toenail that refused to heal. After two rounds of antibiotics, he went to his regular doctor instead of the walk-in clinic.

I was so tired it was all I could do to make it through the day. They first diagnosed me with chronic fatigue syndrome and depression. When the treatments for that didn’t work they finally did the five hour glucose test. Ta-Da! Diabetes. That was almost ten years ago.

I’m not taking anything for it yet, though I was told as I age I may need to go on meds. I just try to not over-do the foods that aren’t good for me and I get by ok. I still get overly tired sometimes (usually after giving in to a weakness, like cheesecake) and I do have some ongoing foot and vision problems.

It definitely involves a bit of a lifestyle change, but you get accustomed to it.

Let’s see.

First there was peeings. Lots of peeings. We’re talking four times a night, people, and at least three times during a workday.

Along with the peeing came thirst. I was constantly chugging down water. Water’s always been my favorite drink, but this year it got ridiculous. At my favorite cafe, where I was eating at least once a day, the waitresses started simply leaving an entire jug on my table.

I was always tired.

But what made me go to the doctor was a precipitous loss of visual acuity - i.e., one day I couldn’t read the clock at work, then I couldn’t read my computer screen.

A feeling of incalculable, sphincter-loosing terror wasn’t so much a symptom of the diabetes as it was a result of that last one.

But I lost 30 pounds and am much better now. Still evil, of course, but much healthier.

Um, so the fact that I pee about 20 times during the day and get up twice during the night is not normal? The pint after pint of water I drink all day long (and the unparalleled thirst in the middle of the night) is also abnormal?
Four more days and I find something out.
At the time my doc just ordered a fasting glucose blood draw. Is a glucose tolerance test inevitable?

I didn’t have to take one, but that’s because my fasting BG was in the screaming-bloody-murder zone. I got a second opinion from a diabetologist and I was off to the races.

This will just display my ignorance, I DO know there’s more than one type of diabetes, but what’s the type where you lose a bunch of weight?

I was skinny to begin with, but I recently dropped probably 15 pounds for no reason. I don’t have the peeing thing, but I have wounds on my legs that are taking a ridiculous amount of time to heal (fire ant bites–3 months). Years ago I was diagnosed with hypoglycemia and I try to avoid straight sugar. I do have the tired all the time thing, too.

So, I suppose I’ll make a doctor’s appointment as I’ve been meaning to do so anyway. In the meantime, does the stuff listed above fit with a type of diabetes. No, I don’t want to self-diagnose, I just want to google before my physical (and fun girl exam).

Did anyone here have tingling/itching/prickling legs, when resting? If it has anything to do with diabetes, it would be during high-blood-sugar times.