What is Diabetes Insipidus? Your Question answered!

What is Diabetes Insipidus?

What is Diabetes Insipidus? Diabetes Insipidus is a condition where a person or an animal produces large amounts of diluted urine and feels excessively thirsty. When either the hypothalamus stops producing vasopressin or the kidneys stop using the vasopressin, one passes excess urine and feels excessively thirsty. This is what is diabetes insipidus. This is how we define diabetes insipidus.

In trying to define diabetes insipidus, it is interesting to note that insipidus meaning is ‘tasteless’. This refers to the tastelessness of urine when it is very dilute and contains very little sodium. So what is diabetes insipidus patient’s urine like? It is dilute, tasteless and low in sodium.

What is diabetes insipidus main symptom?

As seen above, the main symptom of diabetes insipidus is excessive urination and thirst. As a result of diabetes insipidus, the patient may feel very dehydrated, disoriented and thirsty.

When you see these symptoms, you must think of diabetes insipidus diagnosis and diabetes insipidus treatment. A doctor can help you with diabetes insipidus diagnosis and treatment.

What causes diabetes insipidus?

Diabetes insipidus is caused by ADH problems. ADH or Vasopressin is a hormone that regulates the water loss from the body. It manages the water retention in the body to a maintain a healthy water level.

When your body fails to produce ADH or vasopressin, kidneys have no way to decide how much water to retain and how much to pass as urine. This is one type of diabetes insipidus.

In other cases, hypothalamus produces sufficient ADH but nephrons in the kidneys lose the ability to use ADH and retain necessary amounts of water. As a result, you may lose excessive amounts of water as urine. This is another type of diabetes insipidus.

How do you classify diabetes insipidus?

Doctors classify diabetes insipidus based on what causes diabetes insipidus.

The various types of diabetes insipidus are

  • Neurogenic Diabetes Insipidus,
  • Nephrogenic Diabetes Insipidus,
  • Dipsogenic Diabetes Insipidus and
  • Gestational Diabetes Insipidus

Based on diabetes insipidus causes, this is what is diabetes insipidus classified as.

What type of diabetes insipidus do you see when hypothalamus stops producing vasopressin?

When hypothalamus stops producing vasopressin, it leads to neurogenic diabetes insipidus. Due to lack of vasopressin, your body fails to determine how much water to pass out as urine and how much to retain. As a result, body loses excess water making you urinate more. This in turn makes you feel dehydrated and thirsty.

Common root causes for neurogenic diabetes insipidus may include an infection after a head injury or surgery etc. This happens when hypothalamus loses the ability to produce vasopressin due to a head injury or surgery etc.

What type of diabetes insipidus do you see when kidneys fail to use vasopressin?

When kidneys are unable to use the vasopressin that hypothalamus has produced, it leads to nephrogenic diabetes insipidus. Usually a problem with nephrons in kidneys causes this type of diabetes insipidus.

In nephrogenic diabetes insipidus though the body produces vasopressin correctly, nephrons lack the ability to use vasopressin. With the inability  to use vasopressin, nephrons or kidneys cannot regulate the amount water that goes out as urine. This leads to excess urine, thirst and dehydration.

What type of diabetes insipidus do you see with mental illness?

Sometimes a person loses the ability to manage thirst or has a mental illness that causes him to drink too much water. People with some mental disorder cannot control the amount of water they drink. They end up drinking too much water without realising it. As a result the person may get toxic with too much water. This leads to dipsogenic diabetes insipidus.

What type of diabetes insipidus do you see during pregnancy?

Gestational diabetes insipidus occurs in some women during pregnancy. Women who develop gestational diabetes insipidus may not be having any signs of diabetes insipidus before the pregnancy. It is also likely that they will stop to show any diabetes insipidus symptoms after pregnancy.

Women produce vasopressinase in the placenta when they are pregnant. Sometimes, they run the risk of having excessive amounts of vasopressin in the body. This may also be a case of inability to clear the excess vasopressin from the body.

When women show these symptoms in pregnancy, a doctor must carry out through investigation to rule out other problems. Such cases reiterate the fact that a doctor is essential for diabetes insipidus treatment.

Summary | What is diabetes insipidus?

What is diabetes insipidus meaning? Insipidus meaning is tasteless. Diabetes insipidus causes the urine to be very low in sodium, so tasteless.

This is ‘what is diabetes insipidus’ at a high level. This is how to define diabetes insipidus.

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