The incidence of diabetes may be elevated following coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), but it is unclear whether this is specific to severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 infection, associated with shared risk factors for severe COVID-19 and diabetes, and/or a generic risk following illness.
People admitted to the hospital for COVID-19 and/or pneumonia between 1 April 2020 and 31 August 2020 in England were linked with the National Diabetes Audit to identify incident diabetes after discharge up to 31 March 2021. Comparator cohorts admitted with pneumonia over the same dates in 2017, 2018, and 2019 were followed until 31 March 2018, 31 March 2019, and 31 March 2020, respectively. Poisson regression models were used to calculate adjusted diabetes incidence rates.
Using the cohort of people discharged from the hospital following a diagnosis of COVID-19 without pneumonia in 2020 as the standard population (incidence rate 16.4 [95% CI 12.8–20.7] per 1,000 person-years), adjusting for age, sex, ethnicity, and deprivation, gave incidence rates of 19.0 (95% CI 13.8–25.6) and 16.6 (95% CI 13.3–20.4) per 1,000 person-years for those admitted for COVID-19 with pneumonia and pneumonia without COVID-19, respectively, in 2020. These rates are not significantly different from those found after hospital admission for pneumonia in 2019, 2018, and 2017, at 13.7 (95% CI 10.8–17.3), 13.8 (95% CI 10.9–17.4), and 14.2 (95% CI 10.9–18.3) per 1,000 person-years, respectively.
Our data do not support a clear impact of COVID-19 on the incidence of diabetes compared with risks in several comparator groups, including contemporaneously assessed risks in people hospitalized with pneumonia.
This article is part of a special article collection available at https://diabetesjournals.org/journals/collection/52/Diabetes-and-COVID-19-articles.
This article contains supplementary material online at https://doi.org/10.2337/figshare.21753086.