Diabetes Insipidus Vs Diabetes Mellitus: Differences Based on Symptoms, Causes, Types, Treatment, Prognosis, Diagnosis

Diabetes Insipidus and diabetes mellitus are the two types of diabetes that are quite different from each other. In this article we will know about the differences between the two.

Diabetes Insipidus Vs Diabetes Mellitus. Basic Differences

Diabetes Insipidus. Diabetes insipidus or DI is quite a rare disease when compared to diabetes mellitus that is common. Diabetes Insipidus is actually a disease in which the kidneys of the affected individual are not able to sustain water. Diabetes Insipidus is the diabetes that is caused by certain problems in making, releasing or else responding to the ADH or the anti-diuretic hormone and it leads to excessive thirst and also excess of urination.

Diabetes Mellitus. Diabetes mellitus is a condition where there is a high level of sugar in the affected person’s blood. Generally diabetes is referred to as diabetes mellitus, and it is of 3 types, namely gestational diabetes, type- 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes. Diabetes mellitus occurs when there is excess of sugar in your blood. In case of a patient with diabetes mellitus, the extra sugar usually comes out in their urine, which typically makes the urine “sweet” and thus the name comes “Mellitus.”

Diabetes Insipidus Vs Diabetes Mellitus. Differences Based On Symptoms

Diabetes Insipidus. Patients suffering from Diabetes Insipidus experience extreme thirst and excess of urination. However, their urine does not contain glucose. Occasionally, patients of diabetes Insipidus also experience blurred vision. In case of children, this DI can interfere with eating, appetite, weight gain and their growth.

Diabetes Mellitus. Diabetes mellitus is a condition of diabetes where there is increased blood sugar level, which results in excess of urination, as well as of increased hunger and thirst. One of the most common symptoms in diabetes mellitus is blurred vision. It must be noted that individuals suffering from type 2 diabetes, generally develop their symptoms very slowly, and thus may go undiagnosed for a longer period of time. However, in case of type 1 diabetes, patients quickly get sick and are immediately diagnosed.

Diabetes Insipidus Vs Diabetes Mellitus. Differences Based On Causes & Types

Diabetes Insipidus. Diabetes Insipidus (DI) can occur, either due to a lack of ADH or when the kidneys fail in responding to ADH. Based on this, diabetes Insipidus is of two types.

Central Diabetes Insipidus. This is the case where diabetes Insipidus occurs because of a reduction in the ADH and it is more common than the other type of diabetes Insipidus. This type of diabetes Insipidus can either be hereditary or because of any damage to the hypothalamus (the area of the brain that secretes ADH); or damage to the pituitary glands, where there is storage of ADH. Usually such damage can occur due to head injuries, surgery or infections.

Nephrogenic Diabetes Insipidus. This is the second type of diabetes Insipidus, which occurs because of some defect in the kidneys in responding to the ADH. Nephrogenic DI is the condition that can be inherited, especially from the mother to son; or Nephrogenic DI can be caused by kidney disease, such as hypercalcemia; or by some drugs, such as amphotericin B, Lithium, and Demeclocycline.

Diabetes Mellitus. DM is linked to the insulin hormone and is either caused due to a insulin deficiency or from resistance to insulin; or because of the both causes. Lack of exercise, inappropriate diet and obesity can also contribute to the occurrence of diabetes mellitus.

There are 3 types of diabetes mellitus.

Type-1 Diabetes Mellitus. Type-1 Diabetes can develop in people from any ages; though can commonly occur in children and young adults. Type-1 Diabetes is characterized by a deficiency of insulin in the body.

Type-2 Diabetes Mellitus. Type-2 Diabetes Mellitus is commonest type of diabetes mellitus in the entire world. Type-2 Diabetes is a condition where the affected person’s body fails to properly use or store glucose. Type-2 Diabetes occurs when the body fails to produce enough insulin or is not able to use insulin properly. This is a chronic condition of diabetes mellitus.

Gestational Diabetes Mellitus. This type of Diabetes Mellitus affects pregnant women causing increased blood sugar level at any time in the pregnancy of the woman, who did not have diabetes pre-pregnancy.

Diabetes Insipidus Vs Diabetes Mellitus. Differences Based On Diagnosis

Diabetes Insipidus. Diabetes insipidus is the diabetes that can be diagnosed by checking the levels of blood glucose, levels of calcium and the bicarbonate levels in the blood. High level of sodium in the blood electrolytes can also be an indication of diabetes Insipidus.

Diabetes Mellitus. Diabetes mellitus can be diagnosed when the affected person has a fasting plasma glucose level that is over 7 mmol/l, plasma glucose that is over 11.1 mmol/l, after 2 hours of taking 75 g of glucose orally. Positive results from this test must again be tested on any other day for proper confirmation of the diabetes.

Diabetes Insipidus Vs Diabetes Mellitus. Differences Based on Treatments

Diabetes Insipidus. Desmopressin is used for treating central diabetes insipidus, as well as the gestational diabetes insipidus. Carbamazepine or the anticonvulsive medicine also can be used to successfully treating these two types of diabetes insipidus. The diuretic hydrochlorothiazide or else indomethacin can be used to improve the condition of Nephrogenic Diabetes Insipidus.

Diabetes Mellitus. It is not possible to completely cure diabetes mellitus. However, diabetes mellitus can be managed by maintaining the blood glucose levels close to normal. Type-1 diabetes mellitus can be treated by taking insulin injections or by using an insulin pump. Exercise, appropriate diet, and occasional insulin intake can be used to treat type-2 diabetes mellitus.

Diabetes Insipidus Vs Diabetes Mellitus. Differences Based On the Prognosis

Diabetes Insipidus. There are some differences between diabetes Insipidus and diabetes mellitus, based on their prognosis. In case of diabetes Insipidus, when it is treated properly, it does not decrease the life expectancy of the patient. However, the symptoms in case of diabetes Insipidus cannot be eliminated completely even with the proper treatment with acute types of the diabetes.

Diabetes Mellitus. Diabetes mellitus is a condition that has some complications seen in long-term. Diabetes mellitus increases the risk of stroke, cardiovascular disease, chronic kidney disease and peripheral vascular diseases. The life expectancy of the patients with Type-2 diabetes mellitus is reduced by about a decade than those without the type-2 diabetes.


From the above explanation, it is quite clear how diabetes insipidus is different from diabetes mellitus. The latter form of diabetes has got complications that last for a long term and also the life expectancy gets shorter than someone without the diabetes mellitus. It is always advisable to see your doctor and get proper diagnosis of your condition, so as to take the best possible treatments to eradicate or reduce the symptoms of diabetes.

Also Read:

Team PainAssist
Team PainAssist
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Team PainAssist, Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:February 12, 2019

Recent Posts

Related Posts