June 22, 2024

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COVID-19 linked to dramatic increase in type 1 diabetes in children: up to 72%

COVID-19 linked to dramatic increase in type 1 diabetes in children: up to 72%


Study finds COVID-19 linked to dramatic increase in type 1 diabetes in children: up to 72%

Children and adolescents infected with COVID-19 are more likely to develop T1D within six months of being diagnosed with COVID, researchers at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine report.

The research was published Sept. 23 in the online edition of JAMA Network Open.

The findings showed a 72% increase in newly diagnosed T1D among COVID-19 patients 18 years of age and younger.


COVID-19 linked to dramatic increase in type 1 diabetes in children: up to 72%



Nationwide, about 187,000 children and adolescents under the age of 20 have T1D, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).


“Type 1 diabetes is considered an autoimmune disease,” said Pamela Davis, the study’s corresponding author of the paper. “It occurs primarily when the body’s immune defense system attacks insulin-producing cells, halting insulin production and preventing insulin production. Causes disease. It has been suggested that COVID increases the autoimmune response, and our current findings reinforce that suggestion.”


The research team analyzed the de-identified electronic health records of nearly 1.1 million patients aged 18 and younger diagnosed with SARS-CoV-2 infection in the United States and 13 other countries from March 2020 to December 2021.

In addition, they analyzed patients diagnosed with respiratory infections not related to COVID during the same period.


The study population was further divided into two groups: patients under 9 years old and patients 10-18 years old.

After careful statistical matching, taking into account age, demographics, and family history of diabetes, there were 285,628 people in each group, for a total of 571,256 patients.




Research results

Among these more than 571,000 pediatric patients, the researchers found:

  • Within six months of SARS-CoV2 infection, 123 patients (0.043%) received a new diagnosis of T1D, compared with 72 (0.025%) after a non-COVID respiratory infection, representing a new diagnosis increased by 72%;
  • At 1, 3, and 6 months post-infection, patients infected with SARS-CoV2 had a significantly greater risk of being diagnosed with T1D than patients with non-COVID respiratory infections. Similar results were reported in patients in the infant to 9 and 10-18 age groups.


“Families whose children are at high risk for type 1 diabetes should be particularly alert to post-COVID symptoms of diabetes, and pediatricians should be alert to the influx of new cases of type 1 diabetes, especially since the Omicron variant of COVID is spreading among children,” Davis said. It’s happening so quickly. We’re likely to see a massive increase in this disease over the next few months to years. Type 1 diabetes is a lifelong challenge for patients, and the increased incidence represents a significant number of children suffering. “


Also one of the corresponding authors is Rong Xu, a professor of biomedical informatics at the School of Medicine and director of the Center for Artificial Intelligence for Drug Discovery.

She said further research is needed to investigate whether the increased risk of new-onset T1D in paediatric patients following SARS-CoV2 infection persists, who is vulnerable, and how to treat COVID-19-related T1D in children.


“We are also investigating possible changes in the development of type 2 diabetes in children following SARS-CoV2 infection,” Xu said.

According to the CDC, T1D is most common in children, while type 2 diabetes (T2D) is known as “adult-onset diabetes” and develops over time, usually as the patient becomes resistant to the action of insulin, Later it was because the pancreas stopped making enough insulin.


(source:internet, reference only)

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