OBJECTIVE - To estimate the occurrence of early-onset renal involvement in a nationwide population-based cohort of young adults with diabetes in Sweden and relate the findings to glycemic control, type of diabetes, sex, smoking, and blood pressure. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS - The Diabetes Incidence Study in Sweden aims to register all incident cases of diabetes in the age-group 15-34 years. In 1987-1988, 806 patients were reported and invited to participate in a follow-up study focusing on microvascular complications. Of them, 469 subjects participated. The assessment was based on questionnaires (n = 469), blood samples (n = 424), urine samples (n = 251) and, when appropriate, medical records (n = 186). RESULTS - During the follow-up time, median 9 years (range 6-12), 31 of 469 patients (6.6%) with incipient or overt diabetic nephropathy (i.e., micro- or macroalbuminuria) were found, 24 of 426 (5.6%) in type 1 and 7 of 43 (16%) in type 2 diabetic subjects (P = 0.016). Additionally, 24 of 31 patients (77%) had microalbuminuria and 7 (23%) had macroalbuminuria, which mainly occurred in patients with type 2 diabetes. In a Cox regression analysis, high mean HbA1c during the follow-up period and high blood pressure at follow-up increased the risk of developing signs of nephropathy (P = 0.020 and P = 0.003, respectively). Compared with patients with type 1 diabetes, those with type 2 diabetes tended to have an increased risk of renal involvement (P = 0.054) when adjusting for sex, tobacco use, glycemic control, and blood pressure. CONCLUSIONS - Despite modern treatment and self-monitoring of blood glucose, young adult patients with diabetes may still develop renal involvement during the first 10 years of diabetes duration. Inadequate HbA 1c high blood pressure, and type 2 diabetes appear to be risk markers for early occurrence of diabetic nephropathy.
2003. Vol. 26, no 10, 2903-2909 p.