Natural history of incidental hyperglycemia and glycosuria of childhood

J Pediatr. 1989 Nov;115(5 Pt 1):676-80. doi: 10.1016/s0022-3476(89)80641-9.


We prospectively followed 29 children and adolescents over a 1- to 8-year period who were referred for evaluation of hyperglycemia (in the absence of diabetes) or glycosuria found on routine screening or during acute illness. On initial examination, four subjects had islet cell autoantibodies, 4 of 22 had an abnormal intravenous glucose tolerance test result, 6 of 22 had low first-phase insulin release on intravenous glucose tolerance testing, and 10 of 20 had impaired glucose tolerance on oral glucose tolerance testing. On follow-up, insulin-dependent diabetes had developed in two of the four subjects with islet cell autoantibodies. The other two subjects with islet cell antibodies have had persistently abnormal glucose tolerance on both oral and intravenous glucose tolerance testing and have low first-phase insulin responses. Diabetes has developed in none of 25 subjects without islet cell antibodies, although two have persistently abnormal glucose tolerance or insulinopenia. All five subjects with islet cell antibodies or human leukocyte antigen DR3/DR4 with initial impaired glucose tolerance have either acquired diabetes or have abnormal glucose tolerance. In contrast, only one of five subjects with initial impaired glucose tolerance but lacking these markers has persistent glucose intolerance. We conclude that in the absence of islet cell antibodies or human leukocyte antigen DR3/DR4 heterozygosity, incidental hyperglycemia or glycosuria is unlikely to be associated with progression or diabetes.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Autoantibodies
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / etiology
  • Family Health
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Glucose Tolerance Test
  • Glycosuria / immunology
  • Glycosuria / physiopathology*
  • HLA-DR Antigens / genetics*
  • Humans
  • Hyperglycemia / immunology
  • Hyperglycemia / physiopathology*
  • Islets of Langerhans / immunology
  • Male
  • Prospective Studies


  • Autoantibodies
  • HLA-DR Antigens
  • islet cell antibody