Vascular complications are the main cause of morbidity in diabetes mellitus. To evaluate lipoprotein and hemostatic parameters and their relationship with clinically detectable microangiopathy, we studied 58 insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus patients and 60 controls matched for age, sex, and body mass index. Thirteen patients presented clinically detectable microangiopathy (8 retinopathy and 5 both retinopathy and microalbuminuria). A cross-sectional study of lipid profile, coagulation parameters, and a flow-cytometric evaluation of tissue factor expression in normal monocytes induced by patient plasma were performed. Patients were re-evaluated for microangiopathy in a 3-year median follow-up. Patients showed triglyceride enrichment in low (P = 0.00002) and high density lipoproteins (P = 0.004) and increased levels of D-dimer (P < 0.00001), prothrombin fragment 1 + 2 (P < 0.00001), and thrombin-antithrombin III complex (P = 0.0001). Patients with clinically detectable microangiopathy had increased type 1 plasminogen activator inhibitor (P = 0.00001), thrombomodulin (P = 0.02), and induced monocyte tissue factor expression (P < 0.00001). Nine patients developed clinically detectable microangiopathy in the follow-up and the only predictive variable was increased induced tissue factor expression. In conclusion, in these patients elevated thrombin and fibrin generation reflects a hypercoagulable state but clinically detectable microangiopathy seems related to endothelial cell injury markers and to increased induced tissue factor expression on monocytes.