Children Treated With Antipsychotics Have Increased Risk of Type 2 Diabetes

HealthDay News – Youths treated with antipsychotics have increased cumulative risk and exposure-adjusted incidence of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), according to research published online January 20 in JAMA Psychiatry.

Britta Galling, MD, from the North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health System in Glen Oaks, NY, and colleagues conducted a systematic literature search to examine the risk of T2DM associated with antipsychotic treatment in young people. Data were included from 13 studies, with 185 105 youths (mean age: 14.1 years) exposed to antipsychotics and 310 438 patient-years.

Researchers found that the cumulative T2DM risk was 5.72 per 1000 patients for antipsychotic-exposed youths, with an incidence rate of 3.09 cases per 1000 patient-years. Antipsychotic-exposed youths had significantly greater cumulative T2DM risk (odds ratio [OR]: 2.58) and incidence rate ratio (3.02) compared with healthy controls; cumulative T2DM risk and incidence rate ratios were also increased for antipsychotic-exposed youths versus psychiatric controls (OR: 2.09; incidence rate ratio: 1.79). 

Greater cumulative T2DM risk was associated with longer follow-up, olanzapine prescription, and male sex, in multivariable meta-regression analysis of 10 studies. Incidence of T2DM was increased in association with second-generation antipsychotic prescription and less autism spectrum disorder diagnosis.

“Antipsychotics should be used judiciously and for the shortest necessary duration, and their efficacy and safety should be monitored proactively,” the authors wrote.

Disclosures: Several authors disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry.


Galling B, Roldan A, Nielsen RE, et al. Type 2 diabetes mellitus in youth exposed to antipsychotics: a systematic review and meta-analysis. JAMA Psychiatry. 2016. doi: 10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2015.2923.