Jackson was diagnosed with Hyperinsulinism (HI) September 2016, when he was four months old. After spending near three weeks at Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston, TX, we are now home and learning to manage this disease. We continue to have “HI” hopes for this disease. For a cure. For answers. For doctors to be able to identify this disease faster. For a long, fulfilling, future for our son and all of those affected by this disease.
https://ghr.nlm.nih.gov/condition/congenital-hyperinsulinism describes HI as: Congenital hyperinsulinism is a condition that causes individuals to have abnormally high levels of insulin, which is a hormone that helps control blood sugar levels. People with this condition have frequent episodes of low blood sugar (hypoglycemia). In infants and young children, these episodes are characterized by a lack of energy (lethargy), irritability, or difficulty feeding. Repeated episodes of low blood sugar increase the risk for serious complications such as breathing difficulties, seizures, intellectual disability, vision loss, brain damage, and coma.
The severity of congenital hyperinsulinism varies widely among affected individuals, even among members of the same family. About 60 percent of infants with this condition experience a hypoglycemic episode within the first month of life. Other affected children develop hypoglycemia by early childhood. Unlike typical episodes of hypoglycemia, which occur most often after periods without food (fasting) or after exercising, episodes of hypoglycemia in people with congenital hyperinsulinism can even occur after eating. The pancreas doesn’t stop putting out insulin even when the hypoglycemia is so slow it becomes life threatening. Typically those with HI don’t produce ketones creating a greater risk for brain damage.