Cardiff scientist: type 2 diabetes is now common amongst the 'relatively young'
We have known for some time that the incidence of new cases and prevalence of the total number of people with type 2 diabetes has been increasing in the UK.
We also know that there has been an increase in the prevalence of type 2 diabetes in children and adolescents. This is thought to be dependent on many factors such as obesity, diet and family history amongst many other factors.
By analysing routine NHS data we've managed to confirm this and show an increase in the incidence of type 2 diabetes in the UK population, matched by an overall decrease in the average age of diagnosis.
We also found that the incidence of type 2 diabetes was higher for males after the ages of 40 and slightly higher for females aged under 40
Irrespective of the causes, the results show that over the last twenty years, type 2 diabetes can now be considered common amongst relatively young people, which could have major implications for greater health problems in later life.
Given that diabetes is serious and can lead to early death if not supported to manage their condition, it is extremely worrying that so few people have it under control.
When you consider that there are now three million people [around the UK] diagnosed with diabetes and this number is rising quickly, the fact that so many of them do not have good control over their diabetes means that unless something changes we face a public health disaster.
Cardiff diabetes experts 'hope to find cure' for Type 1
Experts say preventing Type 1 diabetes could 'one day become a reality' if clinical trials of a new 'vaccine' prove successful.
We believe that this immune-based therapy can slow or stop the body from damaging its own insulin-making cells in the pancreas. Research to date shows that the treatment is safe, but we are in the early days and need to learn more about how it works in people with newly-diagnosed Type 1 diabetes. If effective, we can develop further treatments for individuals who are at risk of developing this type of diabetes later in life.
Our ultimate hope is to find a cure for Type 1 diabetes.
– Colin Dayan, Professor of Clinical Diabetes and Metabolism