Improvements in life expectancy in type 1 diabetes patients in the last six decades

Diabetes Res Clin Pract. 2009 Nov;86(2):146-51. doi: 10.1016/j.diabres.2009.08.012. Epub 2009 Sep 23.


Aims: To investigate the survival with diabetes in patients treated with insulin from diagnosis.

Subjects and methods: We analyzed 845 subjects, 55.9% males, registered at "I. Pavel" Bucharest Diabetes Centre, insulin-treated from diagnosis, aged <40 years and deceased between 1946 and 2005. We divided the subjects in two groups by age at diagnosis: group A <18 years and group B 18-39.99 years. We used 20 years time periods for year of death: 1946-1965, 1966-1985 and 1986-2005.

Results: The mean age at diabetes onset was 30.36+/-8.04 years, disease duration at death 20.98+/-11.62 years and age at death 51.34+/-14.37 years. The mean increase in survival with diabetes was 19.3 years for group A and 15.9 years for group B. There was a significant decrease in infections in both groups. The increase in coronary heart diseases and stroke is evident only in group B.

Conclusions: We found no changes in age at onset, which combined with an increase in survival with diabetes lead to a significant increase in age at death over the six decades analyzed.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age of Onset
  • Child
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / mortality*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / physiopathology*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / therapy
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Life Expectancy*
  • Male
  • Romania
  • Survival Rate
  • Survivors
  • Time Factors
  • Young Adult