To undertake a narrative review of the impact and pattern of alcohol consumption in young adults with Type 1 diabetes.
Data sources: MEDLINE, EMBASE, PsycINFO, The Cochrane Library, Web of Science, meeting abstracts of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes, the American Diabetes Association and Diabetes UK, Current Controlled Trials, ClinicalTrials.gov, UK Clinical Research Network, scrutiny of bibliographies of retrieved papers and contact with experts in the field. Inclusion criteria: relevant studies of any design of alcohol consumption and young adults with Type 1 diabetes (age 14–25 years) were included. The key outcomes were the quantity, pattern and impact of alcohol consumption, the effect on diabetes control and the effect of interventions to minimize the risks of alcohol for this population.
Six articles and two conference abstracts met the inclusion criteria. There were six cross-sectional studies, one qualitative study and one within-subjects design study. Quality of studies was variable. Alcohol use amongst young adults with Type 1 diabetes was reported to be common and potentially harmful. There was a paucity of evidence on interventions to minimize the risks of alcohol in this target group.
Research is required to understand the social context of alcohol consumption in this population with a view to developing appropriate interventions to minimize the risks associated with its use.
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