As adolescents with diabetes age into adulthood, the likelihood that they will experience mood disorders or attempt suicide may increase, according to findings published in Diabetes Care.
“This research is important as it shows that transition to adult care is possibly associated with increased mental health risk,” Marie-Eve Robinson, MD, CM, MSc, FAAP, FRCPC, pediatric endocrinologist and assistant professor of pediatrics associate at the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario, University of Ottawa in Canada, told Healio. “As children with diabetes will inevitably transfer to adult care, it is crucial for health care providers to assess the adolescent or young adult’s mental health status during that period and provide appropriate mental health resources. This could potentially decrease suicidality and psychiatric disorders.”
Robinson and colleagues assessed the development of mood and psychiatric disorders, suicide attempts and deaths, and psychiatrist visits from age 15 to 25 years among 3,544 adolescents with diabetes (47.3% girls) and 1,388,397 adolescents without diabetes (49.1% girls). Data were collected from the Quebec Integrated Chronic Disease Surveillance System until March 31, 2015.
There was a 33% increased risk for mood disorders among adolescents with vs. without diabetes (adjusted HR = 1.33; 95% CI, 1.19-1.5) and a 29% increased risk for psychiatric disorders (aHR = 1.29; 95% CI, 1.21-1.37).
As adolescents with diabetes age into adulthood, the likelihood that they will experience mood disorders or attempt suicide may increase.
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Compared with the risk for those without diabetes, there was a 3.24 times greater risk that a participant would have a suicide attempt (aHR = 3.24; 95% CI, 1.79-5.88) and a 1.82 times greater risk that a participant would need to see a psychiatrist (aHR = 1.82; 95% CI, 1.67-1.98) if they had diabetes.
“During the years when youth with diabetes transition from pediatric to adult care, they are at increased risk of attempting suicide and developing a new psychiatric disorder compared to their same-aged peers,” Robinson said. “Health care providers should inquire about suicide ideation and mental health disorders among youth with diabetes. Our findings demonstrate the need for increased mental health resources to support adolescents and emerging adults with diabetes during the transition years.” – by Phil Neuffer
For more information:
Marie-Eve Robinson, MD, CM, MSc, FAAP, FRCPC, can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Disclosures: The authors report no relevant financial disclosures.