Teens and young adults with type 2 diabetes develop kidney, nerve, and eye diseases --as well as some risk factors for heart disease --more often than their peers with type 1 diabetes in the years shortly after diagnosis. The results are the latest findings of the SEARCH for Diabetes in Youth study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.
Funded by the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, Bethesda, Md., and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Ga., SEARCH researchers examined how quickly and often youth developed signs of kidney, nerve, and eye diseases, among the most-common complications of diabetes. They also measured several risk factors for heart disease. Participants had diabetes an average of less than eight years at the end of the study.
The study is the largest of its kind in the U.S. Key findings include:
* For youth with type 2 diabetes, nearly 20% developed a sign of kidney disease by the end of the study, compared to about six percent of youth with type 1 diabetes.
* For youth with type 2, about 18% developed nerve disease vs. about nine percent with type 1.
* For youth with type 2, about nine percent developed eye disease, compared to about six percent with type 1.
* Measures for two risk factors for heart disease (hypertension and arterial stiffness) were greater for youth with type 2, but close to equal for a third risk factor (cardiovascular autonomic neuropathy).
Though youth with type 2 diabetes showed signs of complications more often in nearly every measure than their peers with type 1, many youth in both groups developed complications.
'There's often the assumption that young people don't develop complications from diabetes, but that's just not true. We saw that young people with diabetes are...