Type 1 Diabetes Linked to Accelerated Brain Aging

A new study funded by the National Institutes of Health suggests that middle-aged people with type 1 diabetes may be more at risk for cognitive problems.

Researchers found that brain aging was more advanced in these patients, which, over time, could lead to a decreased ability to manage type 1 diabetes.

"The severity of cognitive complications and cerebral small vessel disease - which can starve the brain of oxygen - is much more intense than we expected," said senior study author Caterina Rosano, M.D., from the University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences.

The study included 97 people with type 1 diabetes and 81 non-diabetic individuals. Researchers used MRIs to detect signs of brain abnormalities and aging.

White matter brain damage

Thirty-three percent of people with type 1 diabetes had moderate to severe damage to the brain's white matter - a type of damage often seen in neurological disorders or in people who are aging normally. Only 7 percent of the non-diabetic patients showed these types of brain changes.

Additionally, type-1 diabetics scored lower than non-diabetics on tests of verbal intelligence, information-processing speed and manual dexterity.

Nerve damage - which often manifests as tingling in the fingers or toes - was identified as a risk factor for greater damage to the brain's white matter.

According to Dr. Rosano, more studies are needed in younger patients, but addressing cardiometabolic risks and controlling blood sugar could help to prevent or delay the onset of cognitive problems in type-1 diabetics.

"People with type 1 diabetes are living longer than ever before, and the incidence of type 1 diabetes is increasing annually," said co-author Dr. Karen A. Nunley. "We must learn more about the impact of this disease as patients age. Long-term studies are needed to better detect potential issues and determine what interventions may reduce or prevent accelerated brain aging and cognitive decline."

Source: University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences
Image courtesy of atibodyphoto/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Get Free Diabetic Supplies

Get free diabetic supplies delivered to your door. You will get a free glucose meter, lancing device, 100 test strips, 100 lancets, control solution and carrying case. Just pay shipping.

More Articles

The medical community relies heavily on the goodwill of its citizens, as giving blood and organ donations help save thousands of lives every year...

There are several misconceptions about Diabetes. Learn more about the top misconceptions vs. facts surrounding Type 2 Diabetes below.

86...

It is estimated that 80,000 children and adolescents each year are diagnosed with juvenile diabetes. Juvenile diabetes is diagnosed when the body...

As the summer months come to an end, we throw aside our swimsuits and bring out our favorite team jerseys! In America, fall means football, and...

Evidence is mounting that consuming black cumin helps to manage type 2 diabetes. The spice lowered blood glucose...

More Articles

It's not uncommon to spend several years living with type 2 diabetes and not even know you have the condition. Despite regular check-ups with your...

Type 2 diabetes has become so common in Western culture and media that this often lifelong, serious condition doesn't really raise an eyebrow...

Limiting our intake of highly processed foods, and eating more whole and lightly processed fare can boost our nutrient and fiber intake, lower...

Lantus is a once a day insulin injection that is taken at the same time every day. It replaces anywhere from the average three to five insulin...

Improving your A1C reading requires you to maintain consistently healthy blood...

Just because you have diabetes doesn't mean you can't help your community by being a blood donor. When persons with diabetes maintain good control...

Most of us do not regularly keep the fruit that scientists call Fortunella margarita in our refrigerator. That these small, yellow-orange...

A diagnosis of diabetes usually comes with a list of recommended lifestyle changes. To make these diet and exercise...

Having diabetes affects your body’s ability to handle hot, humid weather, and steamy temperatures can degrade diabetes supplies. But all of this...

Fashion and function come together in clothing developed by AnnaPS, making life a bit more comfortable and convenient for insulin users. The...

Not only is dry skin uncomfortable, but scratched or cracked skin is also susceptible to bacterial and fungal infections – common medical...

One way to ensure our body gets a variety of nutrients is eating nutrient-dense foods, and one of the most nutrient-dense foods on our planet is...

Financial aid and scholarship money are available for people with diabetes, but acquiring it requires an investment of time and patience. Whether...

Any sweetener you use to replace table sugar is a sugar substitute. One type of sugar substitute is artificial sweetener. Three other types...

Smoking is a proven health hazard for everyone, but it is an especially dangerous habit for those with diabetes. Research shows that smokers with...