The Burden of Undiagnosed Diabetes
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Four out of 5 people with undiagnosed diabetes live in low- and middle-income countries. Access to care, particularly in rural and remote areas, remains a challenge.

During the pandemic, early data suggested that there is an increased risk for morbidity and mortality with COVID-19 illness in people with diabetes.

There was also an alarming increase of type 2 diabetes among youth. In 19 studies, the highest reported prevalence of type 2 diabetes in youth. When diabetes affects youth, the risk for complications is especially high because these individuals will be living with the condition for much longer than those diagnosed at a later age.

In a recent study published by the TODAY Study Group, at the end of a mean follow-up of 10 years, 54% of those with youth-onset diabetes (baseline mean age at diagnosis of 14 years) had two or more cardiovascular risk factors in addition to type 2 diabetes. About 20% had three or more cardiovascular risk factors at the end of the follow-up (with < 1% having three or more risk factors at the baseline age of 14 years).

With the rising rate of diabetes in youth, and considering that undiagnosed diabetes could arguably be quite high in this population owing to lack of routine testing, it is anyone's guess as to the avalanche of cardiovascular events that could be waiting for us in the coming years.