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Pancreas size and exocrine function is decreased in young children with recent-onset Type 1 diabetes
journal contributionposted on 2020-08-01, 00:00 authored by P Augustine, R Gent, J Louise, M Taranto, M Penno, R Linke, J J Couper, the ENDIA Study Group, Peter VuillerminPeter Vuillermin
Aims: To measure pancreatic area and exocrine function in young children with recent-onset Type 1 diabetes to determine whether the exocrine pancreas is also affected in the pathophysiology of early childhood diabetes. Methods: Thirty-two children (14 boys) aged 5.5 (4.5, 7.3) median (IQR) years presenting with recent-onset Type 1 diabetes and 90 controls (44 boys) of similar age had ultrasound imaging of the pancreas. Children with Type 1 diabetes were receiving insulin and were without ketosis. Transverse and longitudinal areas of the pancreas were measured by digitalized outline. Pancreatic faecal elastase-1 was analysed using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay kit in recent-onset Type 1 diabetes and 38 first-degree relative control children. Results: Pancreatic area and exocrine function were reduced in Type 1 diabetes. Mean transverse area (SD) in Type 1 diabetes was 6.82 cm2 (1.61) vs. 8.31 cm2 (1.74) in controls, adjusted estimate (95% CI) 1.45 (-2.12, -0.79), P < 0.001; longitudinal area was 1.28 cm2 (0.44) vs. 1.55 cm2 (0.43), adjusted estimate (95% CI) -0.27 (-0.45, -0.09), P = 0.003. Faecal elastase-1 levels in Type 1 diabetes were 455 (323, 833) ug/g, median (IQR) vs. 1408 μg/g (1031, 1989) in controls, P < 0.001. Conclusion: Pancreatic area and accompanying subclinical exocrine function were reduced in very young children with recent-onset Type 1 diabetes. This supports changes in the exocrine pancreas in the pathophysiology of Type 1 diabetes presenting in early life.