University of Glasgow | August 2018 | Early age of type 1 diabetes diagnosis linked to greater heart risks and shorter life expectancy, compared to later diagnosis
Researchers at the University of Glasgow have found that early onset for type 1 diabetes is linked to a shorter life expectancy, by an average of 16 years shorter than a patient without diabetes. For those diagnosed with type 1 later in life, their lifespan is 10 years shorter than people without a diagnosis of diabetes (via University of Glasgow).
The research, which is published in The Lancet, is a longitudinal observational study in Sweden that tracked over 27, 000 people with type 1 for an average of 10 years.
Although it is well established that patients with type 1 diabetes are at increased risk of health problems and have shorter life expectancies, partly due to premature cardiovascular disease. Until this point the impact of age of diagnosis on this excess mortality and cardiovascular risk was unclear. In order to contribute to the limited evidence base, the researchers calculated the excess risk of all-cause mortality, cardiovascular mortality, acute heart attack, stroke, cardiovascular disease, coronary heart disease, heart failure, and atrial fibrillation in 27,195 individuals from the Swedish National Diabetes Register compared to 135,178 controls matched for age, sex, and county from the general population (average age 29 years).
After adjustment for a range of variables that could have influenced the results among them but not limited to age, sex, , diabetes duration, and previous history of cardiovascular complications. The researchers found cardiovascular risks and survival were strongly related to the participant’s age at disease onset, with people diagnosed under the age of 10 having five-fold increased risk of heart attack and coronary heart disease than those diagnosed at age 26-30 years. The younger group also had much higher risk of heart failure and stroke than peers without diabetes and those diagnosed at an older age.
These new estimates suggest that individuals diagnosed before the age of 10 have a 30-times greater risk of serious cardiovascular outcomes like heart attack (0.31 cases per 100,000 person years for participants with diabetes vs 0.02 cases in every 100,000 person-years for controls) and heart disease than those in the general population, whilst risk levels are around six times higher for people diagnosed between ages 26 and 30 (Source: University of Glasgow).
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