OBJECTIVE

Type 2 diabetes in the U.S. is more prevalent in youth of minority racial-ethnic background, but disparities in health outcomes have not been examined in this population.

RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS

We examined racial-ethnic differences in the initial presentation and subsequent comorbidities in 1,217 youth with type 2 diabetes (63% girls) enrolled in the Pediatric Diabetes Consortium (PDC) Registry from February 2012 to June 2018. Demographic and clinical data were collected from medical records and participant self-report.

RESULTS

Overall, the mean age at presentation was 13.4 ± 2.4 years, and BMI was 35.0 ± 9.4 kg/m2. HbA1c was higher and C-peptide was lower in non-Hispanic Black (NHB) and Hispanic (H) youth compared with non-Hispanic White (NHW) youth. NHB were three times as likely to present in diabetic ketoacidosis (19%) versus NHW (6.3%) and H (7.5%), and NHB and H both had a worse HbA1c trajectory compared with NHW peers. Microalbuminuria was documented in 11%, hypertension in 34%, and dyslipidemia in 42% of Registry participants, with no significant difference among racial-ethnic groups. Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) was diagnosed in 9% and 11% of H and NHW, respectively, versus 2% in NHB.

CONCLUSIONS

NHB and H youth with type 2 diabetes presented with worse metabolic control and had persistently worse HbA1c trajectories compared with NHW. Comorbidities exist in a large percentage of these youth independent of race-ethnicity, except for NAFLD being less prevalent in NHB. Greater efforts are needed to mitigate racial-ethnic disparities at diagnosis and in the management of youth with type 2 diabetes.

This article contains supplementary material online at https://doi.org/10.2337/figshare.15174003.

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