JAMA study finds Dramatic Increase in Childhood Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes
On May 7, the results of the SEARCH for Diabetes in Youth study published in JAMA found a 21% increase in type 1 diabetes and 31% rise in type 2 diabetes in children. The study tracked the prevalence of diabetes from 2001 to 2009, and found that type 1 diabetes rose from 1.48 to 1.93 cases per 1,000 people over that eight-year period. Meanwhile, type 2 diabetes in children increased from 0.34 to 0.46 cases in 1,000 people.
The study separated diabetes rates by race/ethnicity, age, and gender, which means it is the first multiethnic data on changes in diabetes in youth ever – that’s a big deal. Although it found that type 1 diabetes was highest in white patients and type 2 diabetes was highest in American Indian youth, there was clearly an increase in diabetes incidence across all groups. The fact that these rates rose noticeably and across many different groups in such a short time is worrisome, and calls for the importance of learning more about effective prevention for both type 1 and type 2 diabetes. As Mr. Jeff Hitchcock, the founder of Children with Diabetes states, “We as a community need to press for more research into why the prevalence of type 1 is increasing so we can begin to contemplate prevention as real.” You said it, Jeff – right you are. – NL