Researchers reported in the September issue of the American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology that almost a third of Maryland residents who died of diabetic ketoacidosis over a six-year period had no known history of diabetes. Researchers said those who died probably had type 1 diabetes. The results underscore the importance of having regular physical examinations that include blood glucose measurement. People who don’t know they have type 1 diabetes may account for a surprising number of deaths from one complication of the condition. While the researchers weren’t able to definitively tell whether those who died had type 1 or type 2 diabetes, their high blood sugar levels suggest they probably had type 1. The finding highlights the need for regular physicals that include checking blood sugar levels, especially if warning signs of diabetes are present, the researchers said. In the study, they looked at 20,406 autopsies and found 107 people who had died from diabetic ketoacidosis, although only 92 had data available for further review. Out of the 92 cases, they found that 60 people were previously diagnosed with diabetes, while 32 were not. Nearly half of those who died with no history of diabetes were in their 40s. The researchers also found that 84 percent of these cases were men, and 53 percent were African-American. – The study was published in the September 2016 issue of the American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology.