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J Viral Hepat. 2016 Aug;23(8):596-605. doi: 10.1111/jvh.12520. Epub 2016 Feb 22.

Matched population-based study examining the risk of type 2 diabetes in people with and without diagnosed hepatitis C virus infection.

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School of Health and Life Sciences, Glasgow Caledonian University, Glasgow, UK.
Health Protection Scotland, Glasgow, UK.
Centre for Population Health Sciences, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, UK.
Information Services Division, NHS National Services Scotland, Edinburgh, UK.


Meta-analyses have found hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection to be associated with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). Here, we examine this association within a large population-based study, according to HCV RNA status. A data-linkage approach was used to examine the excess risk of diagnosed T2DM in people diagnosed with antibodies to HCV (anti-HCV) in Scotland (21 929 anti-HCV(+ves) ; involving 15 827 HCV RNA(+ves) , 3927 HCV RNA(-ves) and 2175 with unknown RNA-status) compared to that of a threefold larger general population sample matched for gender, age and postcode (65 074 anti-HCV(-ves) ). To investigate effects of ascertainment bias the following periods were studied: up to 1 year before (pre-HCV)/within 1 year of (peri-HCV)/more than 1 year post (post-HCV) the date of HCV-diagnosis. T2DM had been diagnosed in 2.9% of anti-HCV(+ves) (including 3.2% of HCV RNA(+ves) and 2.3% of HCV RNA(-ves) ) and 2.7% of anti-HCV(-ves) . A higher proportion of T2DM was diagnosed in the peri-HCV period (i.e. around the time of HCV-diagnosis) for the anti-HCV(+ves) (22%) compared to anti-HCV(-ves) (10%). In both the pre-HCV and post-HCV periods, only those anti-HCV(+ves) living in less deprived areas (13% of the cohort) were found to have a significant excess risk of T2DM compared to anti-HCV(-ves) (adjusted odds ratio in the pre-HCV period: 4.0 for females and 2.3 for males; adjusted hazard ratio in the post-HCV period: 1.5). These findings were similarly observed for both HCV RNA(+ves) (chronic) and HCV RNA(-ves) (resolved). In the largest study of T2DM among chronic HCV-infected individuals to date, there was no evidence to indicate that infection conveyed an appreciable excess risk of T2DM at the population level.


data linkage; hepatitis C; matched cohort study; type 2 diabetes

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