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Studies link Covid-19 infection with increased risk of new diabetes diagnosis

0 2 years ago

(CNN)Over a year after recovering from a Covid-19 infection, Jennifer Hobbs is adjusting to her new normal: brain fog, joint pain, elevated liver enzymes and, now, type 2 diabetes. Hobbs had prediabetes before she got Covid-19, but her blood sugar levels were under control, and she didn’t need any treatment. Recently, that changed.

“I take my blood sugar [level] every morning, and even with two different types of medication, it’s all over the place,” said Hobbs, 36. The new diabetes diagnosis has both Hobbs and her primary care provider wondering if the coronavirus has played a role.

Two years into the pandemic, scientists and physicians are shifting their attention to the long-term consequences of a Covid-19 infection, termed “long Covid.” Recent studies add diabetes to the list of possible long Covid outcomes.

Experts have known that people with diabetes are at higher risk of severe Covid-19 infection, but now, a new connection is unraveling — one in which a Covid-19 infection may lead to a higher risk for diabetes.

One study published this month looked at people who had mild Covid-19 infections in Germany and found that they were 28% more likely to have a new diagnosis of type 2 diabetes compared with people who were never infected.

A study in the United States similarly found an increased incidence rate of diabetes in people who had recovered from Covid-19: a 40% increase in risk at least a year after infection. The researchers estimate that about 2 out of every 100 people who are infected with Covid-19 will have a new diagnosis of diabetes.


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