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Childhood Type 1 Diabetes Set to Double in Europe by 2020

Countries need to allocate health care resources to meet growing demand for treatment

THURSDAY, May 28 (HealthDay News) -- Childhood type 1 diabetes cases are on the rise in Europe, and are set to double among the under-fives by 2020 compared to 2005, according to a study published online on May 28 in The Lancet.

Christopher C. Patterson, Ph.D., of Queen's University Belfast in the United Kingdom, and colleagues analyzed data from 20 registers in 17 countries on 29,311 new cases of type 1 diabetes in children before their 15th birthday from 1989 to 2003. Using this data, they calculated projected incidence rates for 2005, 2010, 2015 and 2020.

There was an increase in incidence recorded in all but two of the registers, ranging from 0.6 to 9.3 percent, and the overall annual increases in the zero to four years, five to nine years, and 10 to 14 years age groups were 5.4 percent, 4.3 percent and 2.9 percent, respectively, the investigators found. The researchers further note that by 2020 there will be a projected 24,400 new cases, with numbers doubling among the under-fives and prevalence among those under 15 set to rise from 94,000 in 2005 to 160,000 in 2020.

"More patients with severe diabetes complications presenting at younger ages than before are also likely, and appropriate care from diagnosis, and maintenance of good metabolic control are crucial for delay or prevention of these adverse complications," the authors conclude.

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