Monday , December 11 2017
Home / Conditions / Type 1 Diabetes / Connection between Type 1 Diabetes and Ulcerative Colitis?

Connection between Type 1 Diabetes and Ulcerative Colitis?

New review of the pathogenetic and therapeutic implications shows that both diseases share similar complications…. 

Patients with ulcerative colitis (UC) are usually prescribed corticosteroids to manage the inflammation associated with the disease, but when the patient has type 1 diabetes, it becomes even more difficult to manage both diseases simultaneously.

Researchers have found type 1 diabetes is one of the top 3 common comorbidities a patient with UC will develop. Because the optimal treatment for UC includes corticosteroid which can increase blood glucose levels, there may be an increased risk of diabetes developing. The association between the two diseases is currently still unknown.

Both UC and diabetes share similar complications including neuropathy, venous thrombosis, osteoporosis and many others. Patients diagnosed with both diseases should be monitored even more closely for hyperglycemia, dehydration and electrolyte imbalance. 

There are currently no alternative therapies to corticosteroids available for the treatment of serious active UC symptoms, but there are alternatives available for mild to moderate UC symptoms. To prevent any serious complications caused by hyperglycemia in mild to moderate conditions, topical mesalazine can be used.

There may be a genetic linkage between the two diseases but more research is needed.

Practice Pearls:
  • Managing both ulcerative colitis and type 1 diabetes simultaneously can be very difficult to achieve because the preferred treatment for UC is corticosteroids which can raise blood sugar levels.
  • Both disease states have similar complications including neuropathy, venous thrombosis, osteoporosis, and post operative complications.
  • Researchers believe there is a genetic linkage between the two diseases, but more research is needed.

Maconi G, Furfaro F, Sciurti R, et al. Glucose intolerance and diabetes mellitus in ulcerative colitis: Pathogenetic and therapeutic implications. J Gastroenterol. 2014;20:3507-3515.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3974517/