Posted: 6:40 pm Saturday, November 10th, 2012

WAR ON DIABETES: For high school athletes, managing diabetes can be stressful, dangerous 

By Post Staff

The nurse entered the examination room and asked what she thought was a harmless question, simply following up on an assumption she’d made after looking at Teresa Cioffoletti’s patient information.

“Teresa’s diabetic, right?”

Teresa and her mother Joann were, for lack of a better descriptive word, shocked. No, Joann recalled saying, before listening to the nurse and her daughter’s pediatrician lay out a convincing case that Teresa did, in fact, have type 1 diabetes, a hereditary disease an estimated 15,000 young people in the United States are diagnosed with each year.

Bloodwork backed up the nurse’s hunch, and the disease changed the trajectory of Teresa’s budding dance and cheerleading career. But six years later, 15-year-old Teresa, like so many other young people fighting diabetes, has figured out a way to lead an active lifestyle. She’s a member of Seminole Ridge High’s competitive cheerleading squad, which placed third in the classification’s state championships last spring, and she still attends dance school.

That’s how diabetes affects today’s young student-athletes. They must balance the same stressful homework, practices, games, and social lives as their peers, while carrying the weight of a voracious battle with their condition.

Click here to read the full story and to read other stories in the war on diabetes.