Asymptomatic hyperglycaemia is associated with increased intimal plus medial thickness of the carotid artery

Diabetologia. 1995 May;38(5):585-91. doi: 10.1007/BF00400728.


Atherosclerotic changes have not been demonstrated directly in asymptomatic hyperglycaemic non-diabetic subjects, although high mortality due to coronary heart disease has been reported. We measured arterial wall thickness non-invasively, in order to directly demonstrate atherosclerosis of the carotid arteries of hyperglycaemic non-diabetic subjects and to evaluate its risk factors. The thicknesses of the intimal plus medial complex (IMT) of the carotid arteries of 112 asymptomatic hyperglycaemic non-diabetic subjects (aged 22-81, 95 males and 17 females) were compared with those of 55 healthy male subjects and 211 non-insulin-dependent NIDDM male diabetic patients. The subjects were subgrouped into impaired glucose-tolerant (IGT) subjects who had a 2-h glycaemic level of more than 7.8 mmol/l, and non-IGT subjects whose 2-h glycaemic levels were within 6.7-7.7 mmol/l. Non-IGT and IGT subjects showed significantly greater IMTs than age-matched healthy males and showed no significant differences compared to age-matched NIDDM patients. Multivariate analysis demonstrated that the risk factors for IMT of non-IGT and IGT subjects were age and systolic blood pressure. According to data on the accumulation of atherogenic risks (hypertension, dyslipidaemia, and smoking), IMT increased linearly in non-IGT and IGT subjects. However, non-IGT and IGT subjects without hyperlipidaemia, hypertension, or smoking risk still had significantly greater IMT than age-matched normal males (1.019 +/- 0.063 vs 0.770 +/- 0.111 mm, p < 0.05).(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Arteriosclerosis / diagnostic imaging*
  • Carotid Arteries / diagnostic imaging
  • Carotid Arteries / pathology*
  • Coronary Disease / epidemiology
  • Coronary Disease / physiopathology*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / pathology*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / physiopathology
  • Electrocardiography
  • Female
  • Glucose Intolerance / pathology*
  • Glucose Intolerance / physiopathology
  • Humans
  • Hyperglycemia / pathology*
  • Hyperglycemia / physiopathology*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Reference Values
  • Regression Analysis
  • Tunica Media / diagnostic imaging
  • Tunica Media / pathology*
  • Ultrasonography