Novel Challenges in Aging with Type 1 Diabetes

Abstract

Purpose of Review

Due to treatment advancements, individuals with type 1 diabetes (T1D) are living longer, presenting a unique understudied population with advanced complex needs. This article is a review of the aging literature in T1D and identifies existing gaps while serving as a call to the research community.

Recent Findings

Recent studies have identified an association between cognitive impairment and glycemic variability, as well as increased risk and frequency of hypoglycemia in older adults with T1D. However, limited research exists about additional physical and mental health conditions and barrier to successful treatment in this population.

Summary

Older adults may experience both age- and diabetes-related barriers to diabetes management. Due to the scarcity of aging T1D research, current treatment guidelines for this age group are based on type 2 diabetes research. There is a critical need to further investigate the physical and mental effects of T1D and aging as well as public health policy; insurance challenges; and needs for support and interventions for older adults with T1D.

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Abbreviations

T1D:

Type 1 diabetes

CGM:

Continuous glucose monitor

ADA:

American Diabetes Association

CSII:

Continuous subcutaneous insulin infusion

FOH:

Fear of hypoglycemia

References

Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance

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Contributions

Alicia H. McAuliffe-Fogarty had the idea for the article, Jeoffrey A. Bispham and Allyson S. Hughes performed the literature search, and Jeoffrey A. Bispham, Allyson S. Hughes, and Kimberly A. Driscoll drafted and/or critically revised the work.

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Correspondence to Jeoffrey A. Bispham.

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Jeoffrey A. Bispham, Allyson S. Hughes, and Alicia H. McAuliffe-Fogarty each declare no potential conflicts of interest.

Kimberly A. Driscoll reports personal fees from T1D Exchange, during the conduct of the study, and personal fees from T1D Exchange, outside the submitted work.

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All reported studies/experiments with human or animal subjects performed by the authors have been previously published and complied with all applicable ethical standards (including the Helsinki declaration and its amendments, institutional/national research committee standards, and international/national/institutional guidelines).

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Bispham, J.A., Hughes, A.S., Driscoll, K.A. et al. Novel Challenges in Aging with Type 1 Diabetes. Curr Diab Rep 20, 15 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11892-020-01298-9

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Keywords

  • Older adults
  • Aging
  • Hypoglycemia
  • Type 1 diabetes
  • Mental health