Researchers believe there may be 5 types of diabetes

Could a more personalized treatment plan be needed?

Categories: For Potential Participants, [Diabetes, Diabetes complications]

For years, diabetes fell into 2 main types – type 1 and type 2 diabetes. However, as the rate of diabetes continues to increase worldwide, research suggests that a better way to classify diabetes is needed.

A recent analysis of health data from Swedish patients newly diagnosed with diabetes suggests that there may be up to 5 distinct types of diabetes. Some types appeared to be more associated with diabetes complications than others. For example, researchers identified one type of diabetes associated with an increased risk of kidney complications, and another with a higher risk of developing diabetic retinopathy. Both types are currently still labelled as type 2 diabetes.

The analysis, published in The Lancet: Diabetes & Endocrinology, suggests that a more precise way of classifying diabetes could help identify people at greater risk of diabetes complications at diagnosis.

What's next

This new way to look at diabetes might eventually allow doctors to tailor a treatment plan to each patient, helping both newly diagnosed patients and those who have had type 2 diabetes for years. However, larger studies are still needed to confirm these findings.

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