The drugs could increase the risk by as much as 1.5 times if frequent and regular courses have been taken over the years leading up to a diabetes diagnosis.
Researchers from the University of Copenhagen made the association after they looked at the records of people diagnosed with diabetes between the years 2000 and 2012. Antibiotic use from 15 years before diagnosis was also recorded.
Narrow-spectrum antibiotics seem to increase the risk slightly more than the broad spectrums, but there seems to be a cumulative effect; the person who has had just one or two courses over the years probably doesn't face an increased risk, the researchers say.
Although there is a definite association between the drugs and the disease, there is a possibility that the antibiotics didn't cause the disease, but were needed by the pre-diabetic patient, the researchers added.
(Source: Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1210/jc.2015-2696)