Epidemiological studies indicate that the incidence and prevalence of type 1 diabetes mellitus is rising worldwide. The increase in incidence has been most prominent in the youngest age group of childhood. Prediction of type 1a autoimmune diabetes can be established by a positive family history or by genetic, immunological or metabolic markers. Prevention of type 1 diabetes can be implemented at three different levels of pathogenesis: primary prevention in individuals without any sign of beta-cell damage, secondary prevention in individuals with signs of beta-cell destruction and tertiary prevention in patients with newly diagnosed type 1 diabetes. In the recent years our knowledge of the disease pathogenesis has grown quickly and worldwide several new prevention trials have been started. Probably immune intervention of type 1 diabetes will prove to be the most effective.
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