Lipids in type 2 diabetes.Semin Vasc Med 2002; 2(1):59-66SV
Type 2 diabetes increases the risk of cardiovascular disease two- to fourfold compared to the risk in nondiabetic subjects. Although type 2 diabetes is associated with a clustering of risk factors, the cause for an excess risk of cardiovascular disease remains unknown. Lipid and lipoprotein abnormalities in type 2 diabetes include particularly elevated levels of total and very low-density lipoprotein triglycerides and reduced levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol. Total and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol levels are usually normal if glycemic control is adequate but LDL particles are small and dense. According to prospective population-based studies, total cholesterol is a similar risk factor for coronary heart disease (CHD) in patients with type 2 diabetes as it is in nondiabetic subjects. High total triglycerides and low HDL cholesterol may be even stronger risk factors for CHD in patients with type 2 diabetes than in nondiabetic subjects. Recent drug treatment trials have indicated that the lowering of total and LDL cholesterol by statins, and the lowering of total triglycerides and the raising of HDL cholesterol by fibrates, are at least as beneficial in diabetic patients as in nondiabetic subjects in the prevention of cardiovascular disease.