Objective: The aim of this study was to investigate the incidence of type 1 diabetes in children and adolescents during the Covid-19 pandemic in Germany compared to previous years.
Research Design and Methods: Based on data from the multicenter German Diabetes Prospective Follow-up Registry (DPV), we analyzed the incidence of type 1 diabetes per 100,000 patient years in children and adolescents in the year 2020. Using Poisson regression models, expected incidences for 2020 were estimated based on the data from 2011 to 2019, and compared to observed incidences in 2020 by estimating incidence rate ratios (IRRs) with its 95% confidence interval (CI).
Results: In 2020, 3,259 children and adolescents with new-onset type 1 diabetes in Germany were registered. The observed incidence in 2020 was significantly higher than the expected incidence (23.2 [95% CI, 22.424.0] vs. 21.0 [20.221.7]; IRR, 1.11 [1.051.16], P < 0.001). Analysis by month showed that the increase in incidence was particularly pronounced in the months June and July (IRRs, 1.43 [95% CI, 1.091.87], p=0.002, and 1.51 [1.161.98], P < 0.001, respectively).
Conclusions: This study found a significant increase in the incidence of type 1 diabetes in children during the Covid-19 pandemic year 2020 with the peak incidence delayed about three months after the first wave of the pandemic. The underlying causes are yet unknown. However, indirect effects of the pandemic are more likely to be the cause than direct ones.
22 Sep 2021 - 26 Sep 2021