Diabetes risk higher after respiratory infections

Infections have been discussed as an important environmental determinant of the worldwide rising incidence of type 1 diabetes, according to a German study.

The researchers sought to determine whether early, short-term or cumulative exposures to infection and fever during the first three years of life were associated with the initiation of persistent islet autoimmunity in children at increased risk of the condition.

They studied 148 high-risk children with 1245 documented infectious events during more than 90,000 person-days in their first three years of life.

They found the risk of islet autoantibody seroconversion more than doubled with respiratory infections during the first six months of life. The risk became 32% higher when the infections occurred between six and 12 months.

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