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Re: [IP] Asthma and Diabetes
Ok Bess, I'll try to be very kind :-) But I bet you're not really shy in
I do think it is very important to keep terminology unambiguous.
All immune responses are not autoimmune. Lots of docs who were trained
before people knew much about autoimmune diseases often get the terms
confused. Autoimmune means that your body's T cells attack specific
tissues made by your own body. With diabetes, arthritis, etc, true
autoimmune diseases, your Tcells find specific proteins in the beta cells
and in the joint linings, and begin to destroy them. There is nothing in
the lung that is attacked by inflammatory cells. There are allergens,
irritants, cold/dry air, yes even Vicks', etc that trigger neurological and
immune responses and asthma attacks. Here the immune system is working
like it is supposed to, but it is the smooth muscle in the airways that
responds inappropriately to the inflammatory reaction. Hence you get spasm
of the airways, and an asthmatic attack.
The epidemiology that diabetics have a very low incidence of asthma
only refers to Type I. I don't know if there is much about asthma and type
IIs or MODY published. As you so carefully stated, there are lots of
causes that can trigger asthma, and these may not involve the immune system
at all! Personally, from what I've seen of asthmatics, if I had to
choose, I think I'd rather have diabetes than severe asthma. My best
college friend died of an asthmatic attack at age 36.
>>>>>>>>>Dear Wayne, Dawn and IP list,
>Just for the record Dawn, asthma is definitely NOT an autoimmune disease.
Hello people. Please be kind to this shy lurker. I'm almost
posting to a list, but I felt the need to add a qualification to the common
belief that asthma is NOT an autoimmune reaction. Asthma, like diabetes, is
a YMMV disease. Not every asthmatic has an autoimmune reaction to an
allergen. Consider my situation, if you will, please.
I am regularly a patient of the endocrinology and pulmonary
The Mayo Clinic. I am 52 year old female, IDDM, Humalog pumping MODY from a
documented long line of MODY's (Maturity Onset Diabetes in the Young). For
more than a decade, Mayo's pulmonary research department has successfully
treated my "full blown" asthma. Dr. Butterfield says my lengthy history of
what I used to call "the uncommon cold" has always been clearly undiagnosed,
incorrectly treated asthma.
>In asthma the immune system is attacking foreign allergens, not body
After repeated extensive testing for allergens, they confirmed that
NO allergies...not a one. However, they DID conclude that my asthma is
definitely an autoimmune response to three specific manageable "triggers".
1. changes in temperature:
3. petroleum based fumes
>In fact, the incidence of asthma among diabetics is far lower than in the
Perhaps across the entire group of diabetics one could conclude the
statement is correct. I don't have any information on that broad ranged
statistic, one way or another. BUT I don't believe Dr. Butterfield was
humoring me, when he explained that "This form of autoimmune response is
commonly found in diabetics of the MODY variety."
I appologize for the lengthy soap box stance. I'll let you all
stage and I'll return to lurker mode. This list has been a great source of
knowledge, support and comfort for me. I hope I explained my understanding
of my particular form of asthma, without offending too many. I expect I
will have to roll with the punches. I'll brace myself. :o) Thank you for
hearing me out, though.
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