- LADA (latent autoimmune diabetes in adults), also known as type 1.5 diabetes, occurs when antibodies attack the hormone-producing cells of the pancreas.
- Symptoms often don’t appear for a long time, but when they do they include frequent thirst, increased urination, unexplained weight loss, blurred vision, and tingling nerves.
- While the exact cause of type 1.5 diabetes is unknown, it’s thought to be genetic with an environmental trigger that sets the process in motion.
- Oral medication can help at first, but in the end the traditional diabetes medication will be necessary.
When we think of diabetes, we often think of the two types — type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes. But there are other forms of this disease that don’t necessarily fit the mold of these two types. LADA (latent autoimmune diabetes in adults) is one of these. While it shares some similarities with type 1 and type 2 diabetes, there are key differences.
Like type 2 diabetes, type 1.5 diabetes comes on gradually, but a person’s beta cells will stop functioning much faster. According to Healthline, 10-percent of people with diabetes have LADA. To learn more, here’s everything to know about type 1.5 diabetes, including the symptoms, causes, and treatment options…
What is Type 1.5 Diabetes?
While the official name for this form of diabetes is LADA, it’s often referred to as type 1.5 diabetes. Similar to type 1 diabetes, LADA occurs “because your body makes antibodies that cause the immune system — your body’s defense against germs — to attack the [hormone that regulates glucose in the blood]-making cells of your pancreas,” writes WebMD.
If the body can’t regulate glucose in the blood, it also can’t control blood sugar levels. Even though it is still a serious illness, WebMD reassures that unlike type 1 diabetes, the symptoms with LADA progress slowly and often don’t require treatment for many months or years after a diagnosis.