A new study finds a link between type 2 diabetes and epilepsy and they say that severe hypoglycemia may play a role.
Researchers conducted a cohort study using Taiwan’s National Health Insurance claims involving 751,792 people with type 2 diabetes. They matched those individuals with 824,253 control subjects. They followed the cohort until an incidence of epilepsy or to the end of 2011 (subjects were identified between 2002-2003).
They found that after a 10-year follow-up, those with type 2 diabetes had a higher incidence rate of epilepsy compared to the control subjects. Researchers controlled for factors like severe hypoglycemia and found that type 2 diabetes raised the risk for epilepsy by some 50%, according to the study abstract.
Stratified analysis showed that type 2 diabetes and severe hypoglycemia “were both independent risk factors for epilepsy,” write the study authors.
The researchers conclude that their findings indicate that severe hypoglycemia in those with type 2 diabetes may raise the risk of epilepsy and that type 2 diabetes itself may also raise the risk for epilepsy, whether severe hypoglycemia is experienced, or not.