People with pre-existing diabetes who are sickened by COVID-19 are known to experience particularly severe symptoms compared with non-diabetic individuals. A study published online on February 27 in eBioMedicine suggests that even in patients with no prior history of diabetes or pre-diabetes, COVID-19 illness is associated with a greater risk for developing new-onset type 2 diabetes compared with being sickened by influenza.
Tim Duong, Ph.D., and colleagues examined the potential risk factors and incidence of new-onset type-2 diabetes in COVID-19 patients versus influenza patients during hospitalization and three months afterwards. During hospitalization, the incidence of new-onset type 2 diabetes was 3.96 times higher in COVID-19 patients compared with influenza patients; at follow-up three months following hospitalization, the increased risk for persistent type 2 diabetes was 1.24 times higher among COVID-19 patients. Older male COVID-19 patients with underlying co-morbidities were especially likely to develop type 2 diabetes that persisted after hospitalization. The researchers concluded that COVID-19 disease severity was the dominant factor leading to persistent diabetes.
Dr. Duong is professor and vice chair for research of radiology at Einstein and Montefiore, professor of biochemistry, and professor in the Dominick P. Purpura Department of Neuroscience at Einstein.
Posted on: Tuesday, February 28, 2023