Blood pressure abnormalities may play an important role in macrovascular damage in type 1 diabetes. Little is known about blood pressure abnormalities and macrovascular damage in children with type 1 diabetes.
Children with type 1 diabetes (n = 57) for a short (3 months‐2 years; n = 24) or long duration (≥5 years; n = 33) and a group of control children without diabetes (n = 29) completed 24‐h ambulatory blood pressure monitoring (ABPM). Carotid intima media thickness (cIMT), a subclinical indicator of atherosclerosis, was assessed by carotid ultrasound.
ABPM abnormalities were more prevalent (57% vs 24%, respectively), and daytime, nighttime and 24‐h systolic, diastolic, and mean arterial blood pressure indices were higher in children with type 1 diabetes compared to control children. The odds estimate of an ABPM abnormality was 6.68 (95% confidence interval: 1.95, 22.9; P = .003) in children with type 1 diabetes compared to controls after adjusting for age, sex, and BMI standardized for age and sex (zBMI). An interaction between ABPM and zBMI on cIMT was observed. In children with type 1 diabetes and ABPM abnormalities, every 1 SD increase in zBMI was associated with a 0.030 mm increase in cIMT (95% confidence interval: 0.002, 0.041; P = .031). This was not observed in control children with ABPM abnormalities or in children with normal ABPM, regardless of type 1 diabetes status.
Children with type 1 diabetes have a high prevalence of ABPM abnormalities independent of disease duration and this is related to early indicators of cardiovascular damage.