In Type 2 Diabetes, Younger Age at Diagnosis Confers Higher Mortality Risks

  • April 12, 2019
  • By Amy Orciari Herman

    Edited by Susan Sadoughi, MD, and André Sofair, MD, MPH

    Type 2 diabetes is associated with excess mortality risks, particularly in those diagnosed at younger ages, according to a Circulation study.

    Using Swedish health registries, researchers matched roughly 320,000 people with diabetes to 1.6 million diabetes-free controls. Over a median 2.5 years’ follow-up, excess risks for total mortality, cardiovascular (CV) mortality, and non-CV mortality in the diabetes cohort increased as age at diabetes diagnosis decreased. The researchers estimate that among those without prior CV disease, diabetes diagnosed around age 15 years was associated with a median 12 years of life lost; at age 45, 6 years of life lost; and at age 65, 2 years of life lost.

    After age 80, a diabetes diagnosis did not confer excess mortality risks.

    The authors conclude that “risk factor control may need to be more aggressive in people developing diabetes at younger ages.” Additionally, many newly diagnosed elders “may not require aggressive management of their diabetes, so that reassessment of treatment goals … might be useful.”