Ask the Diabetes Educator Archive

11/16/04

Q:
I was recently diagnosed with Type II Diabetes. At the time my liver was inflamed (GGT 299), possibly due to a short course of Lipitor I had been taking. Therefore, although my A1c test was 9.8, my doctor chose not to immediately start me on diabetic medications, and to allow me to try to treat the Diabetes via diet and exercise. I stopped the Lipitor. I lost 18 pounds in these first 2 months, have been on a low carb diet as recommended by the nutritionist and all my blood levels are perfect at this time. Is there a chance that the increased glucose levels that I showed at the time of diagnosis occurred as a result of the liver inflammation? If so, is it possible that the Diabetes is a misdiagnosis and the increased blood sugar was a temporary reaction to the liver inflammation/Lipitor issues? I do have some neuropathy in the feet, but otherwise I feel fine. Thank you in advance for your response.

A:
There are secondary causes of diabetes, such as illnesses that can trigger a genetic disposition to the disease. The liver is the clearing house of the body; blood sugar is both stored and released there. It would appear you have the genetic disposition for diabetes, but you have "reversed" it in the sense that it is being managed well with lifestyle changes. If you stopped management, you may well experience elevations in your blood sugar levels. Kudos for what you have achieved!



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