What Is Central Diabetes Insipidus?

Central Diabetes Insipidus

It is usual advice given by the people to a person to get his sugar level checked if he is having more washroom trips but it is unclear to many people why are they advising so? Having more washroom trips is one of the major symptoms of diabetes but how come one would know if this is due to diabetes mellitus or thee central diabetes insipidus? Excessive urination is a major symptom in both. In this article, you will know about the difference between two types of diabetes and symptoms, causes and treatments of central diabetes insipidus in detail.

History of Diabetes:

The diabetes was first time diagnosed by an Egyptian physician Hesy-Ra in 1552 when he observed frequent urination as a symptom in patients suffering from this disease. Later scientists discovered the high sugar level in the blood of patients and thus named it diabetes mellitus. The word diabetes is from the Greek word siphon which means ‘tube’ and Mellitus is from Latin which means ‘sweet’.

Years later, in 1796 the same symptom of excessive urination was observed in the patients but their blood sugar level was normal so Johann Peter Frank introduced another term of central diabetes insipidus for this condition. The word Isipidus is from Latin origin which means ‘tasteless’.

Difference between Diabetes Mellitus and the Central Diabetes Insipidus:

What is Diabetes Mellitus?

Diabetes mellitus is caused by the deficiency of insulin in the blood which can be due to the inability of the pancreas to produce a sufficient amount of insulin or due to body cell resistant to the produced insulin. It is characterized by hyperglycemia ( increased blood sugar level), glycosuria ( glucose in the urine) and polyphagia ( excessive appetite). It is a pancreatic disorder and can be inherited or acquired and it is further divided into two types.

What Is Central Diabetes Insipidus.?

On the other hand, Central diabetes insipidus is due to the failure of the secretion of Antidiuretic hormone or Vasopressin by the pituitary gland in the human brain. This condition is associated with the excretion of a large quantity of dilute glucose-free urine, polydipsia ( excessive thirst) and dehydration. It is a rare genetic disorder caused due to pancreatic disorder or kidney disorder which is also known as nephrogenic diabetes insipidus and can be acquired because of head injury.

Polyuria (excessive production of urine ) is the major symptom in both conditions. Clinical diagnosis is a must to identify the disease. Here we will discuss the central diabetes insipidus in detail.

Central Diabetes Insipidus

Medical Terms for Central Diabetes Insipidus:

In the medical dictionary, central diabetes insipidus is also known by the following given terms:

  • CDI
  • Neurogenic diabetes insipidus
  • Neurohypophyseal diabetes insipidus
  • Vasopressin-sensitive diabetes insipidus

Role of Human brain in Central Diabetes Insipidus:

The pituitary gland in the hypothalamus part of the human brain produces a hormone known as ADH ( antidiuretic hormone) or Vasopressin which is responsible for the absorption of water from the renal tubule in the kidneys. Central diabetes insipidus is a hypothalamic disorder in which the pituitary glands are unable to make ADH due to which there is excessive production of urine in the patients suffering from this disease.

Causes and Etiology of CDI:

  • Trauma or surgery (head injury or surgery) 50 % of cases
  • Idiopathic (disease due to unknown cause) 25% of cases
  • Craniopharyngioma ( brain tumor derived from the pituitary gland)
  • Hypothalamic glioma (benign tumors in the hypothalamus)
  • Germinoma (germ-cell tumor)
  • Granulomatous disease (inherited immunodeficiency disease)

Common Symptoms of Neurogenic Diabetes Insipidus:

These are the most prevalent and clear symptoms of CDI.

  • Change in mentation
  • Excessive thirst
  • Weight loss
  • Insomnia
  • Excessive urination
  • Nocturia

Clinical Diagnosis of CDI:

The diagnosis is done based on a few apparent symptoms and the following tests.

i. Blood tests:

In this test concentration of glucose is checked in the patient’s blood

ii. Urine tests:

The patient’s urine is examined for the presence of glucose and urine consistency is checked.

iii. Water deprivation tests:

It is the best test for the diagnosis of central diabetes insipidus, in this test urine production, blood electrolyte levels and weight are measured after every 12 hours during which the patient is not allowed to drink water.

Treatment of Central Diabetes Insipidus:

In mild cases, the simple treatment is to drink more water in response to thirst or the doctor’s prescribe desmopressin which is a synthetic hormone and is also known as vasopressin. It controls urine production and prevents dehydration. Other medicines such as chlorpropamide and thiazide diuretics are also advised. Treatment of underlying causes is a must to manage the disease.

How to manage Central Diabetes Insipidus:

Central diabetes insipidus is a hypothalamic disorder in many cases so you can manage the symptoms of the disease by working on the advice of your doctor and making few healthy changes in your lifestyle that will benefit your overall health. Remember it is not the disease that destroys you but it is your response to the disorder that makes the difference. If you will have a positive response towards it you will always get healing effects.

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