Cardiovascular mortality and morbidity in type-2 diabetes mellitus

Diabetes Res Clin Pract. 1996 Jul;31 Suppl:S3-13. doi: 10.1016/0168-8227(96)01224-7.


A representative number of prospective studies clearly indicate that cardiovascular morbidity and mortality is significantly increased in type-2 diabetic patients in comparison with non-diabetic control subjects. The cardiovascular death rate is 4.4 fold increased in those diabetic patients presenting none of the classical risk factors (hypertension, hypercholesterinemia or smoking) compared with age-matched control subjects (MRFIT). A decreased survival rate after myocardial infarction, congestive heart failure and an increased occurrence of silent ischemia are responsible for the poor prognosis of type-2 diabetic patients. Recent studies indicate that haemostatic abnormalities and endothelial dysfunction are important risk factors for coronary events in diabetic as well as in nondiabetic patients. In newly diagnosed type-2 diabetic patients a similar prevalence of myocardial infarction and angina compared to previously known type-2 diabetes was found. The long prediabetic period and clustering of risk factors may be very relevant for the high prevalence of cardiovascular disease already at diagnosis of type-2 diabetes. More recent studies performed in Scotland and Verona demonstrated a mortality risk approximately only 50% higher than in nondiabetic subjects. The reduction in the mortality risk could reflect an improvement in diabetes prognosis from the 1960s to the 1980s. Recent observations in type-2 diabetic patients from Finland indicate that glycemic control is an important predictor for coronary heart disease morbidity and mortality. However incidence of coronary heart disease is only low in those patients presenting with a HbAlc value below 6.0%. More information will be available after analysis of the United Kingdom prospective diabetes study. (UKPDS).

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis

MeSH terms

  • Cardiovascular Diseases / etiology
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / mortality*
  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / complications
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / mortality*
  • Diabetic Angiopathies / microbiology*
  • Europe / epidemiology
  • Humans
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • United States / epidemiology