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Type 1 Diabetes Tied to Higher Risk of Developing Epilepsy

Chance of developing epilepsy almost three times greater in patients with type 1 diabetes

FRIDAY, April 1, 2016 (HealthDay News) — Patients with type 1 diabetes are at an increased risk of developing epilepsy, according to a study published online March 31 in Diabetologia.

I-Ching Chou, M.D., from the China Medical University Children’s Hospital in Taiwan, and colleagues used claims data from the Taiwan National Health Insurance Research Database to identify 2,568 patients with type 1 diabetes. Each patient was frequency-matched by sex, urbanization of residence area, and index year with 10 patients without type 1 diabetes.

The researchers found that the risk of developing epilepsy was significantly higher in patients with type 1 diabetes than in those without type 1 diabetes. After adjustment for potential confounders, the type 1 diabetes cohort was 2.84 times more likely to develop epilepsy than the control cohort.

“Metabolic abnormalities of type 1 diabetes, such as hyperglycemia and hypoglycemia, may have a damaging effect on the central nervous system and be associated with significant long-term neurological sequelae,” the authors write.

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