Preadolescent children with type 1 diabetes more prone to heart disease, says report

Wed, 16 Feb 2011
Scientists at the Medical College of Wisconsin have found that preadolescent children that suffer from type 1 diabetes have between a 200 per cent and a 400 per cent higher risk of developing heart disease than children without diabetes . The study revealed that the early signs of cardiovascular disease are likely to become manifest prior to the onset of puberty in many children that have diabetes.

The research, published in Diabetes Care, monitored 21 preadolescent children with an average age of 8.5 years with type 1 diabetes, comparing them with a group of 15 healthy siblings.

The researchers examined flow-mediated dilatation (FMD), a way of measuring the health of a major blood vessel of the upper arm artery, in both sets of children, and which helps to identify any stiffening of the blood vessels, an early sign of cardiovascular disease.

The children with type 1 diabetes had blood vessels with a lower FMD percentage change, resulting from their blood vessels being less expandable than the control group, which could mean that increased circulating glucose results in higher rigidity of blood vessels independent of serum cholesterol levels.

The diabetic children also exhibited vascular inflammation, a potential factor for cardiovascular risk in the future.
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