Alarming results: Diabetes on children and teenagers
New reports are throwing alarming results on diabetes diagnosis on children and teenagers in the US. A little under ten years of study, the pediatric diabetes increased 21% for type 1 and 30.5% for type 2. The study done between 2001 and 2009 showed that these numbers affected both genders equally in all racial groups.
The reasons of these results are not quite clear since there is still no precise understanding of the causes of type 1 diabetes. According to Dr. Dana Dabalea, lead researcher and associate dean of the Colorado School of public health in Aurora, “it is likely that something changed in our environment, both in the US and elsewhere in the world, causing more youth to develop the disease, may be at increasingly younger ages.”
On the other hand for type 2 diabetes they do have some possible causes. Among them are the obesity epidemic along with its effect on pregnancy, causing pregnant ladies to develop gestational diabetes. As stated by Dr. Dabelea, it is also a growing burden in public health since both diabetic groups are presenting a high increase with this obesity epidemic. On this same note, Dr. Robert Ratner, chief medical and scientific officer for the American Diabetes Association, predicted that diabetes will be a major burden on health care in the next two decades. He called to pay more attention to preventing diabetes because otherwise we will not be able to care for all diabetes patients.
This study collected data from over 3 million children and teens. People 19 years and younger were included when investigating on type 1 diabetes. For type 2, the age range was from 10 to 19 years of age, this because type 2 children numbers were too low to be considered in the statistics.
Type 2 diabetes could be prevented by making the right choices in regards to diet and physical activities. Type 1 cannot be prevented but can be treated and its patients can lead a normal life.
These results are causing various reactions among specialists, such as Dr. Luis Gonzalez-Mendoza, director of the pediatric endocrinology department at Miami Children’s Hospital. He said, “Type 1 diabetes seems to be on the rise… there is something that is acting as a trigger for the immune system to go crazy, because type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disorder.”
This report is set to be published in the Journal of the American Medical Association on May 7th and was presented on May 3rd at the annual meeting of the Pediatric Academic Societies in Vancouver, Canada.
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