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COVID-19 increases the risk of diabetes among children and adolescents, according to a recent study in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
Although people with diabetes have a higher risk of developing severe COVID-19, growing evidence shows that COVID-19 may contribute to new-onset diabetes. Previous studies have found that on average, 14% of adults hospitalized with COVID-19 have new diabetes onset. To assess the risk in children and adolescents, the authors analyzed health care claims from about 1.7 million pediatric patients in the IQVIA database, including nearly 81 000 patients who were diagnosed with COVID-19 between March 2020 and February 2021.
Patients with COVID-19 were 166% more likely to receive a new diabetes diagnosis than were age- and sex-matched patients without COVID-19. Those with COVID-19 also were 116% more likely to be newly diagnosed with diabetes than similar patients who had an acute respiratory infection before the pandemic began.
The researchers replicated their findings by using the HealthVerity database, which has claims data for nearly 900 000 pediatric patients, about half of whom had COVID-19 between March 2020 and June 2021. Among patients with COVID-19, new diabetes diagnoses were 31% more likely than in those who didn’t have the disease.
SARS-CoV-2 may directly cause new-onset diabetes by attacking pancreatic cells that express angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 receptors, the authors suggested. Infection-related stress hyperglycemia or changes in glucose metabolism also may trigger the condition. Alternatively, the authors noted, infection may cause prediabetes to progress to diabetes.
They urged clinicians to be vigilant and screen for diabetes in children and adolescents with a history of COVID-19 infection.
Créditos: Comité científico Covid