Juvenile Diabetes Life Expectancy: Prognosis Of Type 1 Diabetes

Diabetes is a condition which is characterized by elevated levels of blood sugar. Juvenile Diabetes or Type I Diabetes is a condition which is frequently observed among children and young adults and is attributed to reduced insulin sensitivity. There are certain research studies that claim that juvenile diabetes is associated with lower life expectancy.

Diabetes Mellitus is an endocrinal disorder which is associated with a wide range of complications. There are two basic forms of Diabetes Mellitus – Type I diabetes (also referred to as Juvenile Diabetes) and Type-II diabetes (also referred to as insulin defiant diabetes).

Though the manifestation of both the forms of diabetes is similar, the etiological considerations for the development vary considerably. The management of the condition and the prognosis depends upon the level to which blood sugar levels are controlled.

Juvenile Diabetes or Type I diabetes is a condition which is associated with reduced insulin sensitivity by the body cells. Under normal conditions, insulin is secreted by the pancreas which helps in absorption of glucose from blood by the body cells. Reduced sensitivity to insulin, results in limited absorption of glucose by the body cells which in turn results in elevated levels of blood sugar.

This condition can be result in a wide range of complications including cardiovascular illness, neurological damage, damage to the kidneys, retinopathy which in turn may result in blindness and increased susceptibility to various skin infections.

The risk for development of complications depends upon the blood sugar levels and with persistently higher levels resulting in more severe complications. This tends to impact the life expectancy of an individual. However, the life expectancy may be normal, if blood sugar levels are controlled and diabetes is managed efficiently.

Life Expectancy Type 1 Diabetes

There have been several research studies that have been published in multiple journals that indicate that the life expectancy of an individual with Juvenile diabetes is about 15 to 20 years less compared to their non diabetic partners.

Though this may have been true about a couple of decades ago but with the advent of various home glucose monitoring tests, individuals suffering from Type 1 diabetes can closely monitor their blood sugar levels and take corrective actions as and when needed. This in turn has helped in reducing the prevalence of long term complications associated with diabetes mellitus and improving the life expectancy of individuals with juvenile diabetes.

If however, juvenile diabetes is kept untreated or unregulated, the possibility of developing complications is fairly high which in turn tends to impact the overall life expectancy of the individual.

Prognosis Of Juvenile Diabetes Mellitus

Juvenile diabetes is a serious medical condition and at present there is no known cure to the condition. However, following a well designed treatment regimen comprising of diet, exercise regimen and medications, the adverse complications of diabetes can be prevented. In general the prognosis of Juvenile diabetes depends upon the following conditions,

  • Age of diagnosing the condition: The earlier juvenile diabetes is identified, the higher are the chances of preventing the advent of complications. Early diagnosis of the condition is considered to improve the prognosis considerably.
  • Treatment Plan Compliance: Compliance to the treatment plan is crucial to prevent development of complications associated with diabetes. Rigid compliance to the treatment regimen tends to improve the prognosis of the condition, while non compliance can result in severe complications which in turn are associated with poor prognosis and reduce life expectancy.