Those who get diabetes at a young age also develop complications much earlier, Elizabeth Tracey reports


Some children develop type 2 diabetes in childhood or teenage years, and now a study looking at what happens to them as they age into their twenties comes to some disturbing conclusions. Rita Kalyani, a diabetes expert at Johns Hopkins, explains.

Kalyani: The burden of diabetic complications was relatively high in this cohort. On average most of these individuals who were now young adults had had diabetes for a little over a decade. What they found was that the majority of them developed high blood pressure, they developed high cholesterol, they developed diabetic kidney disease, they also quite commonly developed nerve disease and also diabetic retinopathy. At least one of these complications occurred in 60% of them.  :31

Kalyani states that the longer someone has the complications of diabetes the worse the outcomes are likely to be, resulting in blindness, limb amputations, kidney failure, and cardiovascular disease. She says this study must act as a wake up call to those who develop diabetes early in life. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.