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Type 1 Diabetes: Recently Diagnosed - What Increases Your Risk

Risk factors for developing type 1 diabetes include:

  • Family history of type 1 diabetes. Having a family history of the disease increases the chance that you will develop antibodies to the insulin-making cells in the pancreas. But it does not mean that you will develop diabetes. Only about 10% to 15% of people with type 1 diabetes have a family history of the disease.3
    • If the father has the disease, a child has a 6% risk of developing it.
    • If a sibling has the disease, a child has a 5% risk of developing it.
    • If the mother has the disease, a child has a 3% risk of developing it.
    • If an identical twin has the disease, the other twin has a 25% to 50% risk of developing it.
  • Race. White people have a greater risk for developing type 1 diabetes than blacks, Asians, or Hispanics.
  • Presence of islet cell antibodies in the blood. People who have both a family history of type 1 diabetes and islet cell antibodies in their blood are likely to develop the disease. Family members of people with type 1 diabetes can be tested to see if they have islet cell antibodies. People who are found to have islet cell antibodies may be able to take part in studies about preventing type 1 diabetes.
  • Certain viral infections during childhood. A child who has enterovirus infections, particularly Coxsackie B infections, has a risk almost 6 times greater than other children for developing type 1 diabetes. But this does not mean that the child will definitely develop the disease.

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: November 05, 2010
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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