WEDNESDAY, June 30, 2021 (HealthDay News) — Hospitalization rates for new-onset pediatric type 2 diabetes increased during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a study presented at the annual meeting of the American Diabetes Association, held virtually from June 25 to 29.

Daniel S. Hsia, M.D., from the Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and colleagues conducted a retrospective chart review of admissions for new onset type 2 diabetes from March to December 2019 and the same period in 2020 in a tertiary care children’s hospital.

The researchers found that the hospitalization rate for new onset diabetes increased from 0.27 percent in 2019 to 0.62 percent in 2020. Three and eight children in 2019 and 2020, respectively, met criteria for diabetic ketoacidosis, while in 2020, two met criteria for hyperosmolar hyperglycemic syndrome. The mean admission hemoglobin A1c was 12.4 and 13.1 percent in 2019 and 2020, respectively, while mean admission glucose was 441 versus 669 mg/dL, respectively. The admission serum osmolality was 314 mmol/kg in 2019 and 335 mmol/kg in 2020. “While our study examined hospital admissions for type 2 diabetes in children at one center, the results may be a microcosm of what is happening at other children’s hospitals across the country,” Hsia said in a statement. “Unfortunately, COVID-19 disrupted our lives in more ways than we realize. Our study reinforces the importance of maintaining a healthy lifestyle for children even under such difficult circumstances.”

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