Pneumonia and diabetes linked?

I have had pneumonia twice since 2010 when I was diagnosed with Type 1. I got my vaccinations for preventing pneumonia. Am I just more prone to getting it since my immune system is so different than non-diabetics? What can I do to prevent it from happening in the cool, wet spring, when I got it both times in Europe. I do get enough sleep and eat well, drink 1-2 glasses of wine while there.
Any suggestions? My PCP just says it “happens”!!!

I’ve never had pneumonia but have experienced several respiratory bacterial infections (so-called “walking pneumonia”). These all happened before my blood glucose took a turn for the better in 2012.

I’m not a doctor but here’s my working theory. It’s well known that prolonged high blood sugar makes a favorable environment for opportunistic bacteria to plant themselves and then reproduce quickly. Perhaps hyperglycemia blunts an immune system that can normally resist the infection and the bacteria are given good opportunity to take hold.

So, if my assumptions are true, the best thing you can do, in addition to getting enough sleep, is to strive to keep your BGs less than about 8 mmol/L or 144 mg/dL.

I have not experienced a respiratory bacterial infection since my blood sugar stays almost exclusively below the above cited limit. I’m sure things are more complicated than my analysis but you will not harm yourself attempting to accomplish this goal. Good luck and please provide updates.

Thanks, Terry, I think your logic sounds good. I will discuss this with my endocrinologist and I think maybe steam-breathing and possible antibiotics, when it gets really infected in my chest. I just don’t want to have another bout of pneumonia, since it has scarred my lungs and so far I feel good, but further scarring could affect my stamina, give me a real case of COPD or cause other issues.
Thanks for the good wishes. Will keep you updated!

I know Disney World caused my diabetes.

Disney owes me a vacation.

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I know its off topic, but did you know you could get a “special pass” to skip the line because diabetes is a disability?

Yes I did. I have not gotten one myself, but my mom had it on the trip that I was DX’d. I think Disney found out I was riding with her and they game me diabetes just to even things up.




People with diabetes have a reduced immunity, so getting infections of all sorts, including pneumonia, is more likely.