Infant of a Type 1 Diabetic Mom

Hi all, I have a 4 month old infant born from a Type 1 diabetic mother. Through serious blood sugar control (Thanks minimed Paradigm pump and CGM) and weekly tests we were able to give birth at 40 weeks to a beautiful baby boy (8 lbs).

Well I have been worrying lately that at some point my baby could develop juvenile diabetes. It could be sometime in the next 15 years or never at all but still I worry. What are even the chances of him developing the disease with one parent with the disease? 50%? Is there any way to detect Type 1 diabetes through cell testing before the beta cells have been obliterated? Can immuno-suppressants prevent the beta cells from being obliterated in the first place?

Because we knew the possible future health risks and equally the future medical advancements we spent the money for cord blood storage. It’s not cheap. We hope that technological advancements will eventually lead to a cure. If my son never develops diabetes, the cord blood has a very high chance of helping my wife. I am not diabetic but if I were… it would also have a high chance of helping me.

The most important prevention known so far is Vitamin D supplementation. Please watch this video about the information epidemeologists have gathered so far.

In short the recommended supplementation of Vitamin D is:
1000 IU for children
2000 IU for adults

This is the most effective way to prevent type 1 diabetes no matter how high the risk (one parent is T1 or both).

Interesting topic, Bryan, and of course it is a concern… but big congrats on the healthy birth of you son!

Is there a lot of Autoimmune issues in her family? Does someone have lupus, are there severe allergies, what about MS? In my family, I am the only Type 1 diabetic in a long line, but all of the females have some form of autoimmune disease. It is currently thought that Type 1 is a mixture of environment, past-illnesses, genetics, and some other factors not yet pinned down. You would be surprised at how few children are Type 1 in their parents’ footsteps. The doctor should take glucose annually unless your son presents with other symptoms, but let’s hope it doesn’t happen!

As for the chord blood, way to go! Makes so much more sense to do that, if you ask me. Technology and science is racing ahead, I have no doubt this kind of tissue will help us all. Best wishes!

I’m a type 1, and I have 3 children. So far, knock wood, no diabetes. My girls have tested negative for the antibodies so far. My 5 year old son is in a study for children who have a 1st degree relative with type 1 and he’s randomized, so I don’t know his status. I was also diagnosed at 28, and have no other family members with the disease.

I try my best not to think about it, not to worry when the other shoe will drop, and for the most part I don’t have any problem keeping it out of my mind. As soon as one of the kids complains of being thirsty, I have to stop myself and realize we all get thirsty, it doesn’t mean diabetes.

Statistically, your son has a 98-99% chance of NEVER being a diabetic. With those odds, I’d happily gamble. Make sure your son eats as healthy as he can as he grows up and the chances are good he will never develop the disease. No guarantee, but you have some good odds on your side.

Good luck and enjoy your son. Your wife did an awesome job managing her blood sugars and pregnancy, congratulations to her for a job well done!

Bryan, congratulations on the birth of your son! I’m glad to hear that mom was able to stay healthy during the pregnancy, I can only imagine that it must be difficult to manage both the diabetes and the pregnancy simultaneously.

Your question is difficult to answer. There are so many factors that are both known and suspected to be implicated in the development of T1 diabetes. Certainly, many believe that genetics does play a role.

Generally speaking, if a first degree relative has T1D the risk of developing diabetes can be as high as 1 in 10 (10% risk). The good news is that mom is the one with T1 and not you and this means that your son’s risk is probably even lower. If mom is less than 25yo when the baby is born, the risk that the baby will develop T1 is about 1 in 25 or 4% risk (vs. 1 in 17 if the father has T1, about 6% risk). If mom is older than 25yo when the baby is born, the risk drops even further to 1 in 100 (1%), or virtually the same risk as the general population. Also important is when mom developed diabetes: the risk is slightly greater if mom developed diabetes as a child vs. as a teenager or adult.

Remember that these data are observational, based on epidemiologic studies that look back in time at patients with diabetes. It certainly could be that genetics doesn’t play as strong a role as the data suggest, and many, many people develop T1 without having any relatives with the disease. In my case, no one in my family has T1 diabetes except for me. If your son does develop diabetes (lets hope that this is not the case) it may have nothing to do with mom having T1. It is always important to remember: Correlation is NOT causation. The causes of T1 are complex and not yet completely understood and we know that there are MANY factors above and beyond genetics that play a role.

Enjoy your new son and I wish mom and baby the best of luck and good health!

References: The Genetics of Diabetes - ADA

The mother has a 4% chance of passing on diabetes to her child. A father has a 7% chance. So, it’s pretty low. But it does happen and the most important thing is not blame yourself, and just to take care of your child the best that you can. You can test your child for the antibodies for diabetes, but I do not believe it’s completely accurate. You’ll want to look into TrialNet to find out more. TrialNet focuses on identifying individuals “at risk” for developing type 1 diabetes. Risk is based on having autoantibodies or other markers and results of certain tests. I’m not sure if this is something you can do on a baby though. You’ll have to ask.

Very informative and interesting theory. I don’t think Vitamin D deficiency will be much of an issue in the Arizona desert.

However, I will be providing him vitamin supplements as a general rule of thumb for good health.

There are in fact a lot of autoimmune diseases in her family. Her mother died of Lupus. Cousins have arthritis. I am kind of shocked that you mentioned that the females in your family line have such issues because oddly enough only the females in her family seem to suffer from these types of issues. My wife is the only one with diabetes.

We will definitely be monitoring his health as he grows up.

Being in Arizona makes the theory questionable at the first glance. On the other hand this is broad statistical data. As you have seen the likelyhood to develop T1 in Israel or Cuba is not zero. This means that it is less likely to develop T1 in Arizona but it still possible. As stated in the video the cause for developing T1 is not known and may be very complex. The epidemeologists just see this significant relationship between supplementation and T1 likelyhood. Maybe the real defect is some sort of problem in our own Vitamin D production at skin level. The remark about the Vitamin D production in individuals prone to develop T1 is going lower and lower over time points in this direction. To me the mystery is not solved but it seems to be a good recommendation to follow.

vitamin D deficiency is one piece of a complex puzzle, that’s true. But being in the Arizona desert isn’t going to do squat for vitamin D levels if you’re indoors and slathered in sunblock all the time! There’s a reason that an alarming proportion of children in this country are vitamin D deficient: they don’t go out in the sun, and when they do, parents are so freaked out about skin cancer that they cover them up and don’t let them soak up any rays. Supplements and/or cod liver oil are great ways to provide vitamin D if there’s concern about sun & skin cancer.

I’m the first ever T1 in my family although there are some other auto immune diseases with my brothers and sisters. I’ve always been told T1 is not based on genetics, at least not completely. Maybe a tendency towards any auto immune disease is, but not specifically T1? Who knows. Husband has both Grandmother and Mother diagnosed with T2. In fact, the week before my diagnosis, he was being tested, turned out to be hypoglycemia. That seems like more of a threat than my T1. I was diagnosed at 23 and I’ve had two girls, now 36 and 30 yrs. old. First was born before diagnosis, second two years in. Healthy and uneventful pregnancy (BEFORE insulin pens, pumps, glucose monitors or CGM’s I am proud to say!) So far, no signs of Diabetes in either girl. The daughter born after diagnosis has gone through a pregnancy herself with no problems. I’ve never worried that they could someday have this but I guess it’s possible. They are healthy and aware and take care of themselves and that’s all I can hope for. I’ve heard they think maybe viruses can cause this but I’m positive it’s a many, many things all working together in the perfect mix to bring this on! :slight_smile:
Control will only get easier and a cure closer so let’s hope for the best. Congrats on the new baby! I’m sure he will grow to be happy and healthy!

I also wanted to recommend TrialNet . Antibodies are thought to show up YEARS before the person shows the symptoms of diabetes. So it will be a warning.

No one in our Family knew of any Diabetics in our Family before my Brothers and I were dxd. Juvenile(Type 1). Certainly not in clusters of 3. Many years after, 4 Juvenile Type 1’s(3 were siblings) emerged and some Type 2’s(dxd. after age 50) on my Dad’s side.

Thank God and touch wood that our Kids do not have Diabetes and none of my younger Brother’s Kids or his Grandkids.

I was also dxd. with severe RA(autoimmune disease) at age 24/25. My Mom has Hyperthyroidism only, for a long time. My Dad was dxd. many years ago way after me, with severe RA only. Actually, I dxd. him. (The Dr. thought he had Anorexia and Bone Cancer. NOT!). We have many Members in our Family with severe RA only.

Please try not to worry so much about him getting Diabetes. It doesn’t help. It just takes away some of the enjoyment of his Life.

Congratulations on your Sweet Baby Boy. Good weight. :slight_smile: Best Wishes and Blessings to you all.

I was pretty unfortunate to have a situation where both my son and I are type 1 diabetics. My son was discoverd first at the age of 16 and I was discovered just recently (misdiagnosed for 3 years) Now is it a blessing or a curse? I have thought about it many nights contemplating just that. I eventually came with the conclusion that because my son has this disease it is a blessing that I also have this disease. There is no diabetes in my family (T1 or T2) so it would be difficult for him to say that no one can relate. But I can relate because I am going through the same thing he is going through. I can help him better because I know what to do and how diabetes response. So is it a curse or blessing? a complete blessing.