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Diabetes Mellitus and Athletics

LUTHER B. TRAVIS, MD; DEBBIE SPEEGLE, RN, MSN
Am J Dis Child. 1978;132(7):725. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1978.02120320085031.
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ABSTRACT

Sir.—In the February issue of the Journal (132:181-187, 1978), Dr Adamkin participates in an important and distinct disservice to children who have diabetes mellitus. In Table 2 ("Modified from Ryan"), diabetes mellitus is listed as one of the "medical causes for disqualification." It is difficult to reconcile the inclusion of this disease in such a category. Although it is true that children with diabetes are more susceptible to problems during sustained physical activity, this should in no way be looked on as a "cause" for disqualification. Such insensitive and inaccurate statements in an otherwise excellent and timely article potentially lead to serious handicaps for the diabetic patient. Managers and/or coaches may use such statements as their authority for denying the child with diabetes the right to participate in organized athletics. Moreover, some physicians, unaccustomed to the management of children with diabetes, may accept this statement as fact, thus advising

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