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Diabetes is a chronic metabolic disorder that affects an estimated 463 million people worldwide. Aiming to improve the treatment of people with diabetes, digital health has been widely adopted in recent years and generated a huge amount of data that could be used for further management of this chronic disease. Taking advantage of this, approaches that use artificial intelligence and specifically deep learning, an emerging type of machine learning, have been widely adopted with promising results. In this paper, we present a comprehensive review of the applications of deep learning within the field of diabetes. We conducted a systematic literature search and identified three main areas that use this approach: diagnosis of diabetes, glucose management, and diagnosis of diabetes-related complications. The search resulted in the selection of 40 original research articles, of which we have summarized the key information about the employed learning models, development process, main outcomes, and baseline methods for performance evaluation. Among the analyzed literature, it is to be noted that various deep learning techniques and frameworks have achieved state-of-the-art performance in many diabetes-related tasks by outperforming conventional machine learning approaches. Meanwhile, we identify some limitations in the current literature, such as a lack of data availability and model interpretability. The rapid developments in deep learning and the increase in available data offer the possibility to meet these challenges in the near future and allow the widespread deployment of this technology in clinical settings.

Original publication




Journal article


IEEE journal of biomedical and health informatics

Publication Date





2744 - 2757


Humans, Diabetes Mellitus, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Deep Learning