Children with type 1 diabetes may live longer

September 1, 2012

Life expectancy has increased markedly for children diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, to the point that estimated life expectancy of patients diagnosed between 1965 and 1980 is only about 4 years less than that of the general US population.

Life expectancy has increased markedly for children diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, to the point that estimated life expectancy of patients diagnosed between 1965 and 1980 is only about 4 years less than that of the general US population.

Investigators examined 2 subcohorts of a study of 933 patients diagnosed with childhood-onset (aged <17 years) type 1 diabetes: those diagnosed between 1950 and 1964 and between 1965 and 1980.

Life expectancy at birth for patients diagnosed between 1965 and 1980 was 68.8 years-15 years longer than that for patients diagnosed from 1950 to 1964. By comparison, the estimated life expectancy of the general US population in 1957 and 1972, the midpoint years for the 2 cohorts, was 71.5 years and 72.4 years, respectively, an improvement of less than 1 year.

Miller RG, Secrest AM, Sharma RK, Songer TJ, Orchard TJ. Improvements in the life expectancy of type 1 diabetes: the Pittsburgh Epidemiology of Diabetes Complications Study cohort. Diabetes. 2012. Epub ahead of print.