Sudden cardiac death among persons with diabetes aged 1-49 years: a 10-year nationwide study of 14 294 deaths in Denmark

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AIMS: The aim of this study was to compare nationwide incidence rate (IR) of sudden cardiac death (SCD) in persons aged 1-49 years with and without diabetes mellitus (DM).

METHODS AND RESULTS: The study population consisted of all persons in Denmark aged 1-49 years in 2000-09, which equals 27.1 million person-years. All 14 294 deaths in the 10-year period were included. By using the highly descriptive Danish death certificates, 1698 cases of sudden and unexpected death were identified. Through review of autopsy reports, discharge summaries, and the Danish registries, we identified 1363 cases of SCD. The Danish Register of Medicinal Product Statistics was used to identify persons with type 1 DM and type 2 DM. Among the 14 294 decedents, there were 669 with DM, of which 118 suffered SCD (9% of all SCD), making SCD the leading cause of death among young persons with DM. Among those aged 1-35 years, the IR of SCD-DM was 21.9 per 100 000 person-years compared to 2.6 per 100 000 person-years among persons without DM [IR ratio 8.6, 95% confidence interval (CI) 5.8-28.6]. Within the age range 36-49 years, the IR among persons with DM was 119.8 per 100 000 person-years compared to 19.7 per 100 000 person-years among persons without DM (IR ratio 6.1, 95% CI 4.7-7.8).

CONCLUSION: We found that young persons with DM aged 1-35 years had >8-fold higher SCD IR compared to young persons without DM. Our study highlights the need for early cardiovascular risk monitoring and assessment in young persons with DM.

Original languageEnglish
JournalEuropean Heart Journal
Issue number28
Pages (from-to)2699–2706
Publication statusPublished - 2020

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