ESPE Abstracts (2022) 95 LB5

ESPE2022 Poster Category 1 Late Breaking (25 abstracts)

Incidence and Severity of Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus during COVID-19 Pandemic

Abigayil Dieguez 1 , Sean DeLacey 1 , Juan Lado 1 , Laura Levin 1 , Adesh Ranganna 2 , Margaret Wu 1 & Monica E. Bianco 2,1


1Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago, Chicago, USA; 2Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago, USA

Background: The COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact healthcare overall particularly in relation to diabetes. Initial studies showed delays in emergent healthcare utilization, decreased preventative care visits, and more severe presentations of new onset diabetes. However, the pathophysiologic relationship between COVID-19 and type 1 diabetes is not yet well understood.

Objectives: Our primary objective was to compare the annual rates of new type 1 diabetes diagnoses between the pre-pandemic (1/2015-12/2019) and pandemic (1/2020-12/2021) periods. We hypothesized that the number of new-onset pediatric cases of type 1 diabetes increased during the COVID-19 pandemic compared to the preceding 5-year period.

Methods: We performed a retrospective review of EMR data from one pediatric tertiary care center from 1/1/2015 to 12/31/2021. Initial data were extracted based on ICD-10 codes (E08, E09, E10, E11, E13). Data were validated and excluded according to the following criteria: age >21 years at diagnosis, diagnosis date outside of study period, confirmed other form of diabetes, complex disease without confirmed auto-antibodies, and inadequate data at time of diagnosis.

Results: Ultimately 1,057 patients met inclusion criteria. In the pre-pandemic period annual new onset cases ranged from 120-147 cases/year with a mean of 135.4 (Table 1). During the COVID-19 pandemic a mean of 182.5 cases/year were diagnosed (168 in 2020 and 197 in 2021). Cases increased 16% from 2019 to 2020 and further increased 17% from 2020 to 2021. Overall, cases increased 35% during the pandemic period (2020-2021) compared to the pre-pandemic period. Prior to the sharp rise in cases, new diagnoses declined in February-May 2020 (4 cases/ month in May 2020 compared to pre-pandemic average of 11.6 cases/month).

Table 1. Annual Number of T1DM Cases
Year T1DM Cases % Change
2015 120  
2016 147 22.5
2017 129 -12.24489796
2018 136 5.426356589
2019 145 6.617647059
2020 168 15.86206897
2021 197 17.26190476
Avg 2015-2019 135.4  
Avg 2020-2021 182.5 34.78581979

Discussion: Quantifying the increase in new diagnoses of type 1 diabetes during the COVID-19 pandemic is important to understand the true impact of the global health crisis on this population. The increase in cases during the pandemic is likely multifactorial and continuing to understand this relationship may have important implications for public health policy and understanding type 1 diabetes pathophysiology in the future.

Volume 95

60th Annual ESPE (ESPE 2022)

Rome, Italy
15 Sep 2022 - 17 Sep 2022

European Society for Paediatric Endocrinology 

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