U.S. Task Force Lowers Diabetes Screening Age Amid Surging Cases

By Nicholas Gerbis
Published: Friday, August 27, 2021 - 10:13am
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As diabetes prevalence in the U.S. surges among both children and adults, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force has lowered its recommended screening age for overweight adults from 40 to 35.

Diabetes affects 13% of all U.S. adults, and 35% meet the criteria for prediabetes.

High body mass index is the biggest risk factor for Type 2 diabetes, which can lead to heart attacks, strokes, kidney failure and blindness.

The causes of Type 1 remain less clear.

More research is needed to learn the value of the age shift, especially among people at greater risk due to biological or socioeconomic factors. But the task force says it hopes earlier interventions will improve outcomes.

The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases this week reported the prevalence of Type 1 in children grew by 45% over the past 16 years, while Type 2 went up by 95%. 

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