The number of young adults hospitalized with diabetes-related conditions in the United States has risen significantly over the last decade, a new study says.
"Studies indicate that the burden of diabetes, type 1 and type 2, is substantial and rising among U.S. children," Dr. Joyce Lee, of the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and colleagues write in the medical journal Diabetes Care. "We wished to evaluate national trends in hospitalizations associated with diabetes for children and young adults."
The researchers found a 38 percent increase from 1993 to 2004 in the number of hospital stays for people between the ages of 0 and 29 years with a diabetes diagnosis.
The trend seemed to be age-dependent. There were significant increases in annual hospitalization rates among patients aged 20 to 29 years, but not among younger subjects.
"Rates of hospitalizations were consistently higher for females than for males throughout the time period," Lee's team reports. "Furthermore, increases in hospitalization rates were significantly greater for females (42 percent) than for males (29 percent)."
Inflation-adjusted annual hospital costs for diabetes increased 130 percent, from $1.05 billion in 1993 to $2.42 billion in 2004.
With the rising rate of diabetes among youngsters, the researchers see the number of hospitalizations increasing even more over coming years.