(HealthDay News) — The burden of type 1 diabetes (T1D) globally is expected to increase rapidly between 2021 and 2040, according to a study published Sept. 13 in The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology.
Gabriel A. Gregory, M.D., from the University of Sydney, and colleagues developed a model to estimate type 1 diabetes prevalence, incidence, associated mortality, and life expectancy for 201 countries for 2021 and projected prevalent cases in 2040.
The researchers found that in 2021, there were about 8.4 million individuals worldwide with T1D, of whom 18% were younger than 20 years, 64% were aged 20 to 59 years, and 19% were aged 60 years or older. There were 0.5 million new cases diagnosed in 2021 at a median age of onset of 39 years, with 35,000 nondiagnosed individuals dying within 12 months of symptomatic onset. One in five people with T1D live in low-income and lower-middle-income countries. For a 10-year-old diagnosed with T1D, remaining life expectancy in 2021 ranged from a mean of 13 years in low-income countries to 65 years in high-income countries. In 2040, there is an expected increase in prevalent cases to 13.5 to 17.4 million (60 to 107% higher than in 2021), with the greatest relative increase expected to be in low-income and lower-middle-income countries.
“Our results provide a warning for substantial negative implications for societies and health care systems,” a coauthor said in a statement. “There is an opportunity to save millions of lives in the coming decades by raising the standard of care for T1D (including ensuring universal access to insulin and other essential supplies) and increasing awareness of the signs and symptoms of T1D to enable a 100% rate of diagnosis in all countries.”