Postprandial hyperglycemia as an etiological factor in vascular failure

Cardiovasc Diabetol. 2009 Apr 29:8:23. doi: 10.1186/1475-2840-8-23.


Postprandial hyperglycemia is characterized by hyperglycemic spikes that induce endothelial dysfunction, inflammatory reactions and oxidative stress, which may lead to progression of atherosclerosis and occurrence of cardiovascular events. Emerging data indicate that postprandial hyperglycemia or even impaired glucose tolerance may predispose to progression of atherosclerosis and cardiovascular events. There is evidence that postprandial hyperglycemia, but not fasting hyperglycemia, independently predicts the occurrence of cardiovascular events. We proposed a concept of 'vascular failure' as a comprehensive syndrome of vascular dysfunction extending from risk factors to advanced atherosclerotic disease. Postprandial hyperglycemia is therefore one of the very important pathophysiological states contributing to vascular failure. Accordingly, controlling postprandial hyperglycemia should be the focus of future clinical investigation as a potential target for preventing vascular failure.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Atherosclerosis / etiology
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / etiology
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / complications
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / drug therapy
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / physiopathology
  • Diabetic Angiopathies / etiology
  • Diabetic Angiopathies / physiopathology
  • Endothelium, Vascular / physiopathology
  • Glucose Intolerance / complications
  • Glucose Intolerance / physiopathology
  • Humans
  • Hyperglycemia / complications*
  • Hyperglycemia / drug therapy
  • Hyperglycemia / physiopathology
  • Hypoglycemic Agents / therapeutic use
  • Inflammation / physiopathology
  • Oxidative Stress
  • Risk Factors
  • Vascular Diseases / etiology*
  • Vascular Diseases / prevention & control


  • Hypoglycemic Agents