Life Expectancy on the Rise for type 1 diabetes

I love to share good news and this recent research shows that the life span of people with diabetes has increased. Check it out:

Mysteries remain in disease progression of extreme type 1 diabetes.

“”Recent study results indicate that the life expectancy of those diagnosed with type 1 diabetes has dramatically increased during a 30-year period, according to results of the Pittsburgh Epidemiology of Diabetes Complications (EDC) study, a long-term prospective study of childhood-onset type 1 diabetes, which was initiated in 1986.

Here’s the part I really like because it’s something I always said, but never had any statistics to back me up:

“It is a possibility for many people with type 1 diabetes to live as long as those without it, if not longer,” Orchard said. “For some, having diabetes makes you follow better behaviors that may improve one’s overall health.”

A lot of this study was based on findings from Joslin’s Medalist Study that looked at patients who’d lived with diabetes for 50 years and more, and were free of complications. We can’t know for sure what has helped these patients to live for so long in such good health but one thing is clear, we all need a solid support system and good insurance:

“Further, experts all agree that long-term success of living with type 1 diabetes is highly contingent on the patient’s ability to care for themselves, their access to health care and services needed, and how well they monitor and manage their diabetes on a continual, daily basis.”


“King said most patients in the Joslin Medalist Study seem to have high health standards and are anxious to try new medical technologies that may improve their quality of life. These factors may play a role in the prolonged lives of many of these patients, along with extraordinary medical care.”

Finally, a few words of optimism to end the night with:

“The outlook has never been better for patients with type 1 diabetes, and given reasonable care and following major guidelines, there is every expectation that these patients can have a relatively normal lifespan and lead a normal life,” Orchard said.”

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