What are the signs and symptoms of pediatric type 1 diabetes mellitus (DM) in infants and toddlers?

Updated: Mar 23, 2021
  • Author: William H Lamb, MD, MBBS, FRCP(Edin), FRCP, FRCPCH; Chief Editor: Sasigarn A Bowden, MD  more...
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Type 1 diabetes mellitus can occur at any age, but incidence rates generally increase with age until midpuberty and then decline. [32] Onset in the first year of life, although unusual, can occur, so type 1 diabetes mellitus must be considered in any infant or toddler, because these children have the greatest risk for mortality if diagnosis is delayed. (Because diabetes is easily missed in an infant or preschool-aged child, if in doubt, check the urine for glucose.) Symptoms in infants and toddlers may include the following:

  • Severe monilial diaper/napkin rash

  • Unexplained malaise

  • Poor weight gain or weight loss

  • Increased thirst

  • Vomiting and dehydration, with a constantly wet napkin/diaper

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