Some facts about diabetes insipidus

Published: 18th April 2007
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When the kidneys are unable to conserve water as they perform their function of filtering blood, there can appear an uncommon condition called diabetes insipidus.

ADH, also called vasopressin is the hormone that controls the amount of water conserved. This hormone is produced in the hypothalamus, a region of the brain, and then is stored and released from the pituitary gland, a small gland at the base of the brain.

When a lack of ADH causes diabetes insipidus, we can say we are dealing with a condition called central diabetes insipidus.

The condition called nephrogenic diabetes insipidus appears when diabetes insipidus is caused by failure of the kidneys to respond to ADH.

We must mention that diabetes insipidus has as major symptoms excessive urination and extreme thirst.

It is known that as a result of the damage to the hypothalamus or pituitary gland after a surgery, infection, tumor, or head injury, there can appear central diabetes insipidus.

This diabetes is rare, but even so, it is more common than nephrogenic diabetes insipidus.

In what concerns nephrogenic diabetes insipidus, it is related to a defect in the parts of the kidneys that reabsorb water back into the bloodstream. This diabetes can also appear because of an inherited disorder. Male children receive from their mothers on the X chromosome the abnormal gene that causes the disease.

Diseases of the kidney like polycystic kidney disease and the effects of certain drugs like lithium, amphotericin B, demeclocycline can also cause nephrogenic diabetes insipidus.

Usually, diabetes insipidus can show symptoms like excessive thirst- which can be intense or uncontrollable and may involve a craving for ice water- and excessive urine volume.

As signs and tests we can mention urinalysis, MRI of the head, and in what concerns the urine output, in central diabetes insipidus is suppressed by a dose of ADH, and in nephrogenic diabetes insipidus not suppressed by a dose of ADH.

It is very important to treat the cause of the underlying condition if possible.

Vasopressin, which can be administered as either a nasal spray or tablets can control central diabetes insipidus . Unfortunately, this is not effective for patients with nephrogenic diabetes insipidus.

If nephrogenic diabetes insipidus is caused by medication, it is important to quit that medication because this will lead to recovery of normal kidney function.

In what concerns hereditary nephrogenic diabetes insipidus, this is treated with fluid intake to match urine output and drugs that lower urine output.

It is known that there can appear complications because of the inadequate fluid consumption. We can mention dry skin, dry mucous membranes, fever, rapid heart rate, height loss, fatigue, lethargy, headache, muscle pains, and other.

It is important to know that if treated, diabetes insipidus does not cause severe problems or reduce life expectancy.

So, if you want to find out more about juvenile diabetes or even about diabetes mellitus please follow this link

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