Oral contraception in adolescents with type 1 diabetes and its association with cardiovascular risk factors. A multicenter DPV study on 24 011 patients from Germany, Austria or Luxembourg

Pediatr Diabetes. 2018 Aug;19(5):937-944. doi: 10.1111/pedi.12656. Epub 2018 Feb 27.


Objective: To investigate differences in cardiovascular risk factors and metabolic control in girls with type 1 diabetes with or without use of oral contraceptives (OC) from the multicenter "diabetes prospective follow-up" (DPV) registry.

Methods: Twenty-four thousand eleven adolescent girls (13 to < 18 years of age) from Germany, Austria or Luxembourg with type 1 diabetes from the DPV registry were included in this cross-sectional study. Multivariable regression models were applied to compare clinical characteristics (hemoglobin A1c [HbA1C ], blood pressure, serum lipids, body mass index) and lifestyle factors (smoking, physical inactivity, alcohol consumption) between girls with or without OC use. Confounders: age, diabetes duration and migration background.

Statistical analysis: SAS 9.4.

Results: In girls with type 1 diabetes and OC use, clinical characteristics and lifestyle factors were less favorable compared to non-users. Differences were most pronounced for the prevalence of dyslipidemia (OC-users: 40.0% vs non-users: 29.4; P < .0001) and the number of smokers (OC-users: 25.9% vs non-users: 12.5%; P < .0001). OC use, sociodemographic characteristics and lifestyle factors explained between 1 and 7% of the population variance in serum lipids and blood pressure. The use of OC explained a small additional proportion in all variables considered (<1%).

Conclusions: OC use in adolescent girls with type 1 diabetes was associated with a poorer cardiovascular risk profile. Biological risk factors were partly explained by a clustering of sociodemographic and lifestyle factors with a small additional contribution of OC use. Prescription of OC should therefore be combined with a screening for cardiovascular risk factors and targeted education.

Keywords: adolescent health; cardiovascular risk; lifestyle; oral contraception; type 1 diabetes.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / etiology*
  • Contraceptives, Oral*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / complications*
  • Female
  • Health Risk Behaviors
  • Humans
  • Life Style
  • Registries*


  • Contraceptives, Oral