Since 2002, the incidence of Type 2 diabetes among children and teens has grown from nine to 12 cases per 100,000 youths. This significant increase reflects a growing threat to the long-term health of our country. Equally concerning: when this disease strikes during youth, Type 2 diabetes is more likely than Type 1 diabetes to lead to dangerous complications including kidney disease, eye damage and nerve damage.
These recent findings come from a major ongoing study of young people with diabetes, called the SEARCH project. Our leading role in such vital research is one reason why so many families turn to our Endocrinology program, which is ranked No. 7 in the nation in the 2017-18 list of Best Children’s Hospitals published by U.S. News & World Report.
As research builds understanding, the results influence how we serve patients. To address the increasing concerns about diabetes-related health risks striking early, we are expanding our Type 2 Diabetes Clinic this year to include more expertise in liver disease, hypertension, bariatric surgery and other advanced specialties.
“A more unified approach to care is needed because we are seeing that Type 2 diabetes is a more aggressive disease when it starts during childhood. The co-morbidities of the disease are coming on at an earlier age,” says Lawrence Dolan, MD, director of Endocrinology at Cincinnati Children's.
We take on the rare and complex conditions that play havoc with the process of growing up. In addition to helping children with diabetes, we provide expert care for difficult metabolic disorders, lipid disorders, delays in puberty, disorders of sexual differentiation, and more.
"We also work in close collaboration with patients and families,” Dolan says. “Their thoughtful input helps improve how we deliver care, which in turn helps improve day-to-day life for many of the young people we serve."
Why we stand out
- Our Growth Disorders Center is a national referral center that goes well beyond standard therapies to study the underlying genetic factors that can affect everything from bone growth plates to DNA damage repair.
- Our Turner Syndrome Center is the largest of its kind in the U.S. We recently hosted a major international conference that helped define new standards of care for this condition.
- Our Diabetes Center is one of just five programs nationwide leading the SEARCH project to track the frequency, impact and longer-term outcomes of care for childhood diabetes. Findings from this work have recently appeared in important medical journals, including JAMA and the New England Journal of Medicine.
- And our Disorders of Sex Development Center is one of the most advanced in the world. It includes specialists in endocrinology, urology, pediatric gynecological surgery, psychiatry and human genetics.
Learn more about our diabetes and endocrinology programs.