According to a recent study, those with type 1 diabetes have a higher risk of dying from coronavirus than those with type 2
According to NHS research, type 1 diabetics are more likely to die of COVID-19 than those with type 2, following a study confirming that those with diabetes have a significantly increased risk of dying from COVID-19.
This news comes after NHS England said of the 22,332 people who died since 31 March, 5,873 (26%) of them had diabetes as an underlying health condition.
It has been shown that all deaths from the coronavirus among patients in hospitals throughout England amidst the COVID-19 pandemic have been associated with diabetes, according to the NHS research study.
People with type 1 diabetes, the form of the disease that is related to autoimmunity, are three-and-a-half times more likely to die if they contract the coronavirus than those do not have diabetes.
Those with type 2 diabetes, which is the form of diabetes closely linked to being overweight, are two times as likely to die as those without diabetes. Nine out of 10 people with diabetes have type 2, many of which are obese.
Age is currently still the biggest determining the risk factor for death among either type of diabetics from COVID-19. According to new findings collated by NHS England, those under the age of 40 have a very low risk of dying from the coronavirus compared with those who are over the age of 40, especially compared with the elderly,. People with type 1 diabetes, which is often diagnosed in childhood, tend to be a younger demographic than those with type 2 diabetes.
So far in the UK during the COVID-19 pandemic, a reported 7,466 people who have died in hospitals throughout England had type 2 diabetes and 365 people had type 1.
The study also found that the overall rate of death for those with diabetes doubled throughout the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic. Among those with both types of diabetes, men, BAME people and those living within more impoverished communities were at higher risk.
Professor Jonathan Valabhji, NHS England’s national clinical director for diabetes and obesity and the study’s lead author, said:
“This research shows the extent of the risk of coronavirus for people with diabetes and the different risks for those with type 1 and type 2 diabetes.”
“Importantly, it also shows that higher blood glucose levels and obesity further increase the risk in both types of diabetes.”
Jon Cohen, emeritus professor of infectious diseases at Brighton and Sussex medical school, said: “Bacterial infections are more common and more severe in diabetes. This has generally not been thought to be such a problem with viral infections such as coronavirus, but any severe infection can cause problems with insulin control so this too will likely contribute to the increased mortality rate in type 1 patients.”
“So diabetic patients are probably not at greater risk of catching coronavirus, but do have a greater risk of becoming seriously ill if they do catch it.”
This news comes after an antibody test for COVID-19 that could help ease lockdown measures in the UK has been approved by Public Health England.