Master DJ is a 16-year-old, studying in the 11th standard. He leads a very undisciplined lifestyle which includes no exercise, to avoid walking, drives scooter illegally [he is only16]. He eats out at least 5 times a week and his favourite dish is pizza ordered with a large portion of extra cheese. He is 174 cm tall and weighs 119 kgs.
He has been regularly accompanying his mother when she comes for treatment at S.L. Raheja Hospital (A Fortis Associate), Mahim. Recently, he casually complained about itching in his groins and private parts and was advised to fast which included post lunch blood sugar test, HbA1c, and lipid profile.
His valves for the above-mentioned tests were: 178 mg%, 249 mg%, 8.5% and 134 mg% [LDL cholesterol]. He was diagnosed with Diabetes Mellitus and he has started management with meal planning, exercise, metformin tablets and has shown promising improvement in a short span of 2-3 weeks.
Until the beginning of the 21st century, the onset of diabetes at 16 always meant conventional diabetes of children and adolescent [Type 1 diabetes]. Lack of severe symptoms of diabetes, family history of type 2 diabetes, extreme obesity and response to metformin tablets were clear pointers towards Type 2 diabetes in DJ’s case.
This kind of cases are increasingly diagnosed by diabetologists all over the globe including India. Dr. Pradeep G. Talwalkar, Diabetologists at S. L. Raheja Hospital, Mumbai has been treating several such cases including a girl, who was only 12 years old at the time of diagnosis of Type 2 diabetes.
Onset of diabetes at a very young age increases the risk of complications and health related setbacks, interfering with an individual’s career, leading to grave socio-economic implications.
Type 2 diabetes among youngsters needs to be tackled at the earliest. Youngsters should be encouraged to adapt healthy lifestyle and prevent obesity to prevent diabetes. Off springs of middle aged people with diabetes should not wait until 30 to carry out first screening tests for diabetes. If obese, they should undertake these tests at the time of entering adolescence, and if not grossly obese, at the time of turning 20.
So, let’s spread the news and save our youngsters from getting Type 2 Diabetes.