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Ask Dr. D. Love Your Own Question
Dr. D. Love
Dr. D. Love, Doctor
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 18648
Experience:  Family Physician for 10 years; Hospital Medical Director for 10 years.
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I am a 70 year old with controlled diabetes. I have had this

Customer Question

hello I am a 70 year old with controlled diabetes. I have had this strange condition for over a decade. Sometimes, I get excessive night sweats that would drench my bed sheets and pillow to the point that I have to have a towel by my pillow to wipe the
sweat off my forehead. When this occurs, it may last for a month and disappear for months and come back. I am also very sensitive to cold, mostly at night. At some point during the night, I get a very cold sensation around the pelvic/hip area, especially.
I get this sensation very often at some point in the middle of the night even though I sleep with many covers. I even have to sleep with a heat pad underneath my buttock when this occurs. I have also had this condition for over a decade. I am an anxious person
and suffer from sleep problems. I have trouble falling asleep and sometimes wake up in the middle of the night. I have been taking prozac 30 mg a day for almost a year and although my mood has improved, it has not done much to my sleep disorder. My thyroid
is normal.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 2 years ago.
Hello from JustAnswer.
What evaluation beyond checking the thyroid has been done for these symptoms?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Full blood test, including testosterone level (also normal). HB1Ac within normal range.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
My doctor is not suspecting anything serious like lymphoma because I have had this condition for a long time and I don't have other symptoms.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I take metformin for my diabetes and have had diabetes for over 2 decades. As I said my diabetes is under control as I eat well balanced meals and am active.
Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 2 years ago.
I agree that the persistence of the symptoms would indicate that it is not a serious progressive disorder, such as lymphoma.
However, there is some additional information that would be helpful.
Have you checked your blood sugar during these symptoms to see if it is getting too low?
Have you had a sleep study?
Have you had any heart evaluation, such as an echocardiogram?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
No sleep study but I did have an echo and it turned out normal. I have not checked my blood sugar when I had those symptoms.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Could it be an autonomic neuropathy? I do have a lot of gas problems too. When I exercise I burp a lot and this has been going on for over a decade as well. What does it mean if my blood sugar is falling to low levels during the night time? Do I have to modify my medication?
Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for the additional information.
As I said above, the duration of these symptoms would speak against any serious progressive disease, such as lymphoma or certain chronic infections. But there are several conditions that could be the underlying causes of these symptoms.
Some diabetics will get a low blood sugar in the middle of the night, and this will frequently cause night sweats. The diabetics that are under tight control have a greater chance of having episodes of low blood sugar, although the metformin is the medicine for diabetes that is associated with the lowest risk of low blood sugar. Usually, the only method for determining whether this is the cause of symptoms would be checking the blood sugar during the symptoms, as the blood sugar would usually be normal at other times.
Yes, another possible cause would be an autonomic neuropathy. It is not possible to directly measure nerve function of the autonomic nerves, but it is possible to measure the function of the peripheral nerves. If there is evidence of peripheral nerve dysfunction, then it would support that there would also be autonomic nerve dysfunction.
With the difficulty falling and staying asleep, it also would be appropriate to consider certain sleep disorders that also can cause night sweats, such as sleep apnea. A sleep study would be the appropriate test to assess for sleep disorders.
If I can provide any further information, please let me know.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Can you give some insight on the cold sensation that I get around the hip area in the middle of the night, all year round, as opposed to the sweating which only occur sometimes during the year. Is there a particular reason why the cold sensation is located in that area of my body? thank you
Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 2 years ago.
Altered temperature sensation at night can occur because of an autonomic neuropathy or a sleep disorder, as discussed above. The location of the cold sensation can occur anywhere on the body, but there is no particular reason that you are feeling it in that specific location.