Pharmacotherapy options for pediatric diabetes

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Abstract

Purpose of review

Type 1 diabetes (T1D) and type 2 diabetes (T2D) are frequent conditions during childhood and adolescence. The present review offers an update on current available treatment strategies for T1D and T2D approved for use in children and adolescents.

Recent findings

Insulin remains the main and essential therapeutic strategy in youth with T1D. A second generation of insulin analogues is being evaluated and could help in improving glycemic control. Over the last decades advances in technology have allowed the implementation of insulin pump therapy and continuous glucose monitoring, and are now leading the way towards the development of an artificial pancreas or closed loop system.

Recent findings

Treatment of T2D is based on lifestyle interventions and metformin as the first-line drug to be used. Little evidence is available for other oral hypoglycemic drugs, currently used in adults.

Summary

Although much progress has been made in the field of diabetes management, there are still several unmet goals. One of the main issues is to develop a system allowing more physiological insulin coverage. For both T1D and T2D, there is a strong need of new drugs to be used alone or in combination, mainly in patients struggling to achieve good glycemic control.

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