Reviewed by Brunilda Nazario on December 02, 2015

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Rachel Whitmer, PhD

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Video Transcript

RACHEL WHITMER: So we just did a very large study where we looked at over 400,000 older adults. And we followed them for 12 years. And 334 of them had Type 1 diabetes. And we saw that over 12 years, those with Type 1 diabetes had about an 80% to 90% higher risk of getting dementia in comparison to people without Type 1 diabetes. And this risk is about the same as what we've seen with Type 2.

We don't yet know why this is happening. So the next steps in our work is to really try to untangle that. So what is it about Type 1? We know they're more likely to have depression and to have a lot of low blood sugar episodes. We know they're more likely to have microvascular complications. Those are complications that affect things in your body that have to do with really small blood vessels.

So our next steps is to try to see, are those things that elevate the risk for this group? Because we really want to try to understand, what can this group due to lower their risk?