Diabetes Insipidus: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatments
Diabetes Insipidus is caused by the water imbalance occurred in human’s body. It is kind of uncommon even though there are people who suffer from this condition. Besides, the imbalance could lead to severe thirst even though the patient has been drinking lots of fluids because body excretes urine in large amount. Diabetes Insipidus is not related to Diabetes Mellitus.
However, Diabetes Insipidus has no cure. But it can be treated to slow down and lower the symptoms. At least, the treatment could relieve the thirst intensity and make the urine output becomes normal.
Symptoms of Diabetes Insipidus
In fact, this health condition could affect adults and infants. It does not put age as the consideration though. The most common symptoms and signs are such as the extreme thirst along with excessive amount of excretion especially on urination. A healthy adult will normally urinate about 3 liters a day. But when someone is suffering from Diabetes Insipidus, this person could urinate as much as 15 liters a day if this person may drink lots of fluids, since Diabetes Insipidus is caused by the water imbalance. Sometimes, you need to get up at night just because the urge to urinate and peeing your bed.
Infants and younger people who are infected by diabetes insipidus may also experience several symptoms and signs such as:
- Inconsolable crying
- Unexplained fussiness
- Vomiting without reasons
- Sudden diarrhea
- Delayed growth
- Unexplained weight loss
If you notice there are two or more signs occur in you then you need to see the doctor immediately. When you urinated too often and too much with severe thirst then it is also your cue to see the doctor. Diabetes is much easier to be treated when you know it earlier.
Causes of Diabetes Insipidus
Diabetes insipidus is caused by something in human’s body that cannot act normally about how to handle fluids intake. When it works normally, the kidneys will remove the excess fluid from the blood stream. Later, the waste of fluid will be stores temporarily in the balled as the urine. When the system of fluid regulation works properly, the kidneys will conserve the fluid and produce less urine especially when the water in your body is decreased. It will be released through perspiration.
The composition and volume of fluids in your body can be balanced by the combination of excretion by kidney and oral intake. The fluid rate is mostly regulated by thirst. Meanwhile, the fluid rate excreted by the kidneys will be mostly influenced by the anti-diuretic hormone (ADH) production. This thing is also called as vasopressin.
ADH is made by your body in the hypothalamus. It later will store the hormone in the pituitary gland that is located in your brain, basically. ADH will be released through the bloodstream when the body begins to get dehydrated. After that, ADH will concentrate the urine by provoking the kidney tubules to let go the water to the bloodstream instead of excreting is through the urine.
Where the system is disrupted could determine what kind of diabetes insipidus you have. Here are some of the causes:
- Central diabetes insipidus is caused by the damage at the hypothalamus. It disrupts the normal work of body to produce, store, and release the ADH or anti-diuretic hormone. It could be due to meningitis, tumor, surgery, head injury, or inflammation. And if it is occurred to children then it is mostly genetic.
- Nephrogenic diabetes insipidus happens when the kidney tubules have such defect. It makes the kidneys unable to respond the ADH properly. Defect is caused by genetic disorder, chronic kidney condition, and consuming certain drugs.
- Gestational diabetes insipidus is pretty rare. It only occurs to a mother during pregnancy when the enzyme produced by placenta destroys the ADH.
- Primary polydipsia is a condition that could result the excretion becomes large in volume as urine. It almost has nothing to do with the damage or production of ADH.
When the patient takes a lot of water and becomes excessive, it could damage the kidneys and give suppress the ADH. This is when your body could not concentrate the urine. On the other hand, primary polydipsia is also the result of severe thirst due to the damage in mechanism of thirst regulation. It has been linked to mental illness somehow.
Risk factors of Diabetes Insipidus
Nephrogenic diabetes insipidus could present after birth. And when it does, it is genetics that will permanently alter the ability of kidneys to concentrate urine. This condition usually happens in males. But women can also get this due to family history after all.
The condition of diabetes insipidus is caused by water imbalance could create several complications. As we have mentioned earlier, primary polydipsia could make your body retains too much water. But on the other hand, diabetes insipidus in general could make your body retains too little water so it could not function properly. This way will lead to dehydration. Dehydration will cause another issue such as:
- Dry mouth
- Decreased skin elasticity
- Fastened heart rate
- Weight loss
Other complication that could be caused by diabetes insipidus is electrolyte imbalance. As we all know that electrolyte is the minerals needed by your body so the body could maintain the fluid balance. When your electrolyte is not balanced, it could cause:
- Lethargy and fatigue
- Muscle cramps
- Appetite lost
What you can do in the meantime?
In fact, the symptoms and signs of diabetes insipidus could be triggered by other health conditions. This is why the doctor will do some tests first. It will determine if you have the condition or not. Other than that, the test will determine what type of diabetes insipidus presence in your body so the treatment can be performed as soon as possible.
The treatment depends on the condition in your body. But in the meantime, you can drink as much as necessary, until your thirst is relieved. You are better not doing activities that could lead to dehydration. Physical exertion and spend time under the high temperature is not recommended too. Meanwhile, you can make appointment with your doctor for further action. So, you know what diabetes insipidus is caused by.