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    Asthma, diabetes link tied to which diagnosis comes first

    A prior diagnosis of asthma increases the risk of subsequent type 1 diabetes mellitus (DM), but a type 1 DM diagnosis first decreases the risk of subsequent asthma, according to a new study.

    Previous studies into the association between the two immune-mediated diseases had yielded inconsistent results. Evidence from observational studies shows inverse, direct and null associations.

    Finnish researchers, led by Johanna Metsälä, PhD, an epidemiologist at the National Institute for Health and Welfare, Helsinki, Finland, set out to assess the association between asthma and type 1 DM among children and adolescents, taking into account the time sequence of disease diagnoses and potential confounders in a large case-cohort study.

    The researchers reported their results at the European Academy of Allergy and Clinical Immunology Congress 2017 in Helsinki (Abstract 0204).

    In an initial cohort of all children born between 1981 and 2008 in Finland, the researchers found 81,473 had been diagnosed with asthma and 9,541 had been diagnosed with type 1 DM up to age 16 by the end of 2009. They used 171,138 patients derived from a 10% random sample from each birth year cohort as a reference cohort.

    Children were identified on the basis of insulin and anti-asthmatic drug purchases from Finland's drug prescription register. Data on maternal background and perinatal factors came from the medical birth register.


    Next: Study details

    Mark L. Fuerst
    Staff Correspondent


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