Type 3c diabetes mistaken for type 2 says study

By Editor
30th October 2017
Research

More than 97 per cent of people who have previously experienced pancreatic disease are misdiagnosed typically with type 2 diabetes, research has claimed.

According to a study published in Diabetes Care, they should have been been diagnosed with type 3c diabetes, which occurs as a result of pancreatic inflammation, abnormal growth of tissue on the organ or surgically removing part or all of the tissue, affecting the body’s ability to produce insulin.

Such a misdiagnosis impacts on treatment, with those with type 3c diabetes requiring insulin therapy more urgently than those with type 2 diabetes.

Greater awareness of type 3c diabetes within the medical profession is required immediately, Professor Simon de Lusigna

The research study by the University of Surrey was conducted to describe the incidence of diabetes following pancreatic disease, assess how these patients were classified by clinicians and compare clinical characteristics with type 1 and type 2 diabetes. Particular focus was given to those who developed type 3c diabetes.

In the first ever study of its kind, researchers examined the primary care records of more than 2 and discovered that up to 97.3 per cent of people who have previously experienced pancreatic disease were misdiagnosed, typically with type 2 diabetes, rather than the correct condition type 3c.

Adults were more likely to develop type 3c diabetes than type 1 diabetes, the researchers found. In their sample, 205 more people were newly diagnosed with type 3c diabetes than with type 1. This discovery shows this under-recognised form of diabetes is more common than previously thought and could pose a potential threat to public health.

Professor Simon de Lusignan, senior author of the study, said: “Greater awareness of type 3c diabetes within the medical profession is required immediately to improve management of this disease, which now has a higher incidence than Type 1 diabetes in adults.

“Our research shows that the majority of people with Type 3c diabetes are being misdiagnosed with Type 2 diabetes, putting both their short and long term health at risk. Diabetes and its complications place a tremendous burden on the NHS and it is important that patients are diagnosed quickly and correctly, helping them get the specific care they need.

“This builds on our previous work that suggests that failure to flag the right diagnosis is associated with lower quality care.”

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