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Diabetes Res Clin Pract. 2013 May;100(2):257-64. doi: 10.1016/j.diabres.2013.03.016. Epub 2013 Mar 30.

Family psychological stress early in life and development of type 1 diabetes: the ABIS prospective study.

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Div of Pediatrics and Diabetes Research Centre, Dept of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, Faculty of Health Sciences, Linköping University, Linköping, Sweden.



This study investigated whether psychological stress in the family during the child's first year of life are associated with the risk of childhood type 1 diabetes (T1D). According to the beta-cell stress hypothesis all factors that increase the need for, or the resistance to, insulin may be regarded as risk factors for T1D.


Among 8921 children from the general population with questionnaire data from one parent at child's birth and at 1 year of age, 42 cases of T1D were identified up to 11-13 years of age. Additionally 15 cases with multiple diabetes-related autoantibodies were detected in a sub-sample of 2649 children.


Cox regression analyses showed no significant associations between serious life events (hazard ratio 0.7 for yes vs. no [95% CI 0.2-1.9], p=0.47), parenting stress (0.9 per scale score [0.5-1.7], p=0.79), or parental dissatisfaction (0.6 per scale score [0.3-1.2], p=0.13) during the first year of life and later diagnosis of T1D, after controlling for socioeconomic, demographic, and diabetes-related factors. Inclusion of children with multiple autoantibodies did not alter the results.


No association between psychological stress early in life and development of T1D could be confirmed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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