Differences in cardiovascular disease risk between nondiabetic adults with mental retardation with and without Down syndrome

Am J Ment Retard. 2002 May;107(3):201-11. doi: 10.1352/0895-8017(2002)107<0201:DICDRB>2.0.CO;2.


A reduced expression of the insulin resistance syndrome, a common neuroendocrine disorder underlying atherosclerosis, may play a role in reduced atherosclerosis in adults with Down syndrome. We compared selected components of the insulin resistance syndrome between 75 adults with Down syndrome and 70 with mental retardation due to other causes. After adjusting for age differences, residence, cigarette smoking, and medication use, women with Down syndrome had lower fasting plasma glucose and lower systolic blood pressure than comparison women. Men with Down syndrome had lower systolic and diastolic blood pressure than comparison men. Results suggest that women with Down syndrome may be less likely to express the insulin resistance syndrome, and men and women with Down syndrome may possess fewer atherosclerotic risk factors than the comparison groups.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antihypertensive Agents / therapeutic use
  • Blood Glucose
  • Body Mass Index
  • Cholesterol, LDL / blood
  • Down Syndrome / complications*
  • Down Syndrome / epidemiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hypertension / diagnosis
  • Hypertension / drug therapy
  • Hypertension / epidemiology*
  • Insulin Resistance
  • Intellectual Disability / complications*
  • Intellectual Disability / epidemiology*
  • Male
  • Risk Factors
  • Severity of Illness Index


  • Antihypertensive Agents
  • Blood Glucose
  • Cholesterol, LDL