Objectives To assess additional life expectancy (LE), expected years of life lost, and lifetime health care expenditures after type 1 diabetes diagnosis, stratified by sex and age of first diagnosis (early: 0–12 years; late: 13–40 years). Methods A longitudinal cohort of patients with diabetes was constructed from Taiwan's National Health Insurance Research Database of 1999 to 2012. The survival functions for diabetic patients and age- and sex-matched general population were estimated by using a semiparametric extrapolation method with annual life tables. The average monthly health care expenditures were multiplied by the corresponding monthly survival rates and summed to calculate the lifetime health care expenditures. Cox proportional hazard models were constructed to corroborate the effects of sex and age, after being adjusted for comorbidities, complications, and calendar years. Results A total of 2386 cases (45% early diagnosis, 49% males) were identified. An additional LE after diabetes diagnosis was 45.12 years, with an estimated 17.63 years of life lost. The predicted total and diabetes-related lifetime costs were $56,939 and $102,140, respectively. Early diagnosed patients had a longer LE and lower health care spending compared with those of late-diagnosed patients. Male patients had a shorter LE and a higher expected years of life lost than the female patients, which corresponded to lower lifetime costs for the former. The Cox model results for overall mortality corroborated these trends. Conclusions Early detection of type 1 diabetes and sex-specific strategies would probably improve long-term health outcomes and save on the cost of diabetes care.
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