Diabetes that begins in adulthood falls into five distinct categories, new research has revealed, with scientists suggesting it is time to ditch the idea that diabetes is largely split into two types. They reported in The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology, there are five specific types of diabetes that can occur in adulthood preferably the two presently recognized. The study suggested that in the same way that a patient requiring a transfusion must receive the right blood type, diabetes sub-types need different treatments.
Senior author Leif Groop, an endocrinologist at Lund University in Sweden said, “This is the first step towards personalized treatment of diabetes”, adding that the new classification is a “paradigm shift” in how the disease is viewed. According to the International Diabetes Federation, Today some 420 million people around the world experience diabetes, by 2045 the number predicted to rise to 629 million.
Presently, the disease is divided into 2 subtypes.
With type 1 – typically diagnosed in childhood and accounting for about 10 percent of cases — the body simply doesn’t make insulin, a hormone that helps regulate blood sugar levels.
The body makes some insulin but not adequate, which means glucose stays in the blood. Acute cases may also require limb amputations, for type 2.
Researchers monitored 13,270 newly diagnosed diabetes patients for the study, ranging in age from 18 to 97. Lead author Emma Ahlqvist, an associate professor at Lund University said. “This will enable earlier treatment to prevent complications in patients who are most at risk of being affected.”
The next two groups are mild forms of the disease with one of them, called mild obesity-related diabetes, related to high BMI and the other, mild age-related diabetes, generally seen in older patients. Both categories can be managed with metformin and lifestyle advice says the team.