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Type 1 Diabetes Linked to Lower Life Expectancy, Study Shows

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Type 1 Diabetes Linked to Lower Life Expectancy, Study Shows
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A recent study published in The Journal of the American Medical, titled, Estimated Life Expectancy in a Scottish Cohort With Type 1 Diabetes, 2008-2010, compared Scottish patients aged 20 years old, with type 1 diabetes to their equivalents among the healthy general population, and discovered the diabetic cohorts’ average life expectancy was more than a decade shorter, likely because of their chronic metabolic condition.

In the last 30 years there have been significant advances in the treatment of type 1 diabetes. Contemporary estimates and accurate ways of measuring life expectancy could be useful to assess and measure the impact of diabetes and to evaluate the overall changes in diabetes care and treatment through time. There are several reports regarding type 1 diabetes and its standardized mortality ratios but very few studies have thought to analyze and provide life expectancy data.

Shona J. Livingstone and colleagues, from the University of Dundee, Scotland, used a large national registry to compare the life expectancy of patients with type 1 diabetes to the general population living without the disease. They assessed patient records from 2008 through 2010, of individuals as young as 20 years old, diagnosed with type 1 diabetes.

The numerical results of this team’s work are described in the press release and now cited: “Life expectancy at an attained age of 20 years was an additional 46.2 years among men with type 1 diabetes and 57.3 years among men without it, an estimated loss in life expectancy with diabetes of 11.1 years. Life expectancy from age 20 years was an additional 48.l years among women with type 1 diabetes and 61.0 years among women without it, an estimated loss with diabetes of 12.9 years. In the general population without type 1 diabetes, 76 percent of men and 83 percent of women survived to age 70 years compared with 47 percent of men and 55 percent of women with type 1 diabetes.”

Additionally, the researchers found that among patients with type 1 diabetes with well-preserved function of their kidneys, life expectancy decreased by 7.9 years for women and 8.3 years for men at 20 years old. Ischemic heart disease was related to the largest percent of estimated life expectancy loss. Diabetic coma and ketoacidosis were associated with the largest loss before 50 years of age.

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