Prevalence of Diabetes and Diabetic Nephropathy in a Large U.S. Commercially Insured Pediatric Population, 2002–2013

Diabetes Journal

Diabetic Nephropathy – A Complication of Diabetes

Imagine your kidneys are like a sophisticated waste management system. Now, diabetic nephropathy is like a wrench thrown into this system, causing significant damage. It’s a kidney disease that occurs as a complication of diabetes, with potentially severe consequences if left unaddressed.

Original article written by Lin Li, Susan Jick, Stefanie Breitenstein, and Alexander Michel for The Diabetes Journal on August 3, 2015. Click here to read the original article.


DiabetesJournalOBJECTIVE To estimate the prevalence of diabetes and diabetic nephropathy in a large population of U.S. commercially insured patients aged <18 years from 2002 to 2013.


RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS Using the U.S. MarketScan commercial claims database, we identified 96,171 pediatric patients with diabetes and 3,161 pediatric patients with diabetic nephropathy (DN) during 2002–2013. We estimated prevalence of pediatric diabetes overall; by diabetes type, age, and sex; and prevalence of pediatric DN overall; by age, sex, and diabetes type.


RESULTS The annual prevalence of diabetes in the whole pediatric population increased from 1.86 to 2.82 per 1,000 during 2002–2013: 1.48 to 2.32 per 1,000 for type 1 diabetes and 0.38 to 0.67 per 1,000 for type 2 diabetes in 2002–2006 and then 0.56 to 0.49 per 1,000 thereafter. The annual prevalence of diabetic nephropathy in pediatric patients with diabetes increased from 1.16 to 3.44% for all cases and 0.83 to 2.32% for probable cases only in 2002–2013. Prevalence of diabetes and diabetic nephropathy was highest in patients aged 12 to <18 years. While prevalence of type 1 diabetes was higher in male than in female youth, prevalence of type 2 diabetes and diabetic nephropathy was higher in female than in male youth. There was no difference in prevalence of diabetic nephropathy by diabetes type.


CONCLUSIONS The prevalence of diabetes and diabetic nephropathy increased in the U.S. MarketScan commercially insured pediatric population from 2002 to 2013. The prevalence of diabetes and DN markedly increased starting at age 12 years.

Have you ever considered how prevalent diabetes and its complications, like diabetic nephropathy, are among children? Well, buckle up! We’re about to take a deep dive into the state of these conditions in the U.S. pediatric population.

Brief Overview of Diabetes and DN

Diabetes in the Pediatric Population

Diabetes, as many of you know, is a chronic condition that occurs when the body can’t regulate blood sugar effectively. It can strike anyone, regardless of age. When it comes to the pediatric population, it’s like a thief in the night, robbing them of their carefree childhood and forcing them to deal with health issues that most adults find challenging.

Survey Methodology

Data Collection

In the study period from 2002 to 2013, data was collected from a broad cross-section of commercially insured children across the United States. Like piecing together a complex puzzle, this vast data was carefully collated and analyzed.

Cohort Selection

To ensure the study’s integrity, stringent selection criteria were used to identify children with diabetes and DN. It was like picking the right team for a critical mission – only those fitting the bill were included.


Prevalence of Diabetes

An alarming rise in the prevalence of diabetes among the pediatric population was observed during this period. It’s as if we were watching a tsunami approach from afar, powerless to stop it.

Prevalence of DN

Further darkening the landscape, the data showed a significant increase in diabetic nephropathy cases among the children with diabetes. The numbers painted a grim picture, much like

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