Childhood and adolescent diabetes mellitus in Arabs residing in the United Arab Emirates

John Punnose, M. M. Agarwal, Ali El Khadir, K. Devadas, I. T. Mugamer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Citations (Scopus)


In 9 years (1990-1998), 40 Arab patients between the ages of 0 and 18 years had newly diagnosed diabetes mellitus (DM) at the Al-Ain hospital, United Arab Emirates (UAE). In this cohort, 35 patients had Type 1 DM while the remaining five patients had features of early onset Type 2 DM. For Type 1 DM patients, the mean age at diagnosis of was 9.2±4.1 years. At presentation, their mean plasma glucose was 27.6±11/mmol with 28 (80%) patients having diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA), both being much higher than generally reported in the West. The mean insulin requirement increased from 0.84±0.27 U/kg per 24 h (0-9-year group) to 1.02±0.33 U/kg per 24 h (10-18-year group), P=0.055. The home glucose monitoring and the glycaemic control of these Type 1 DM patients were sub-optimal with 28% of patients having recurrence of DKA. Among the Type 2 DM patients, four (80%) were obese with a positive family history of Type 2 DM. All of them initially responded to diet and oral hypoglycaemic drugs. Public education about DM in childhood and prevention of adolescent obesity remain major public health challenges in the UAE.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)29-33
Number of pages5
JournalDiabetes Research and Clinical Practice
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • Arabs
  • Childhood diabetes mellitus
  • Middle East

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Endocrinology


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