–To assess the extent to which glycemic control by itself results in satisfactory control of diabetic dyslipidemia.
A population-based case series consisting of 386 Mexican Americans and 94 non-Hispanic whites with non-insulin-dependent (type II) diabetes was studied. All subjects answered questions about their medical history and care received and underwent a standardized oral glucose tolerance test and measurements of fasting serum lipid and lipoprotein concentrations. Three definitions of dyslipidemia were used: total cholesterol >6.20 mM (240 mg/dl), triglyceride >2.82 mM (250 mg/dl), and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol <0.90 mM (35 mg/dl).
Despite having removed subjects receiving lipid-lowering drugs, diabetic subjects who had been previously diagnosed and were under medical care exhibited a lower prevalence of hypertriglyceridemia than those who were newly diagnosed at the time of their survey visit, suggesting that conventional management was associated with a reduced frequency of this dyslipidemia. Among previously diagnosed cases, the prevalence of dyslipidemia rose with worsening glycemic control but there was little association with type of therapy (diet only, oral agents, or insulin) or frequency of physician visits. In general, the prevalence of dyslipidemia in diabetic subjects remained higher than in nondiabetic subjects, despite hypoglycemic therapy.
The results suggest that glycemic control by itself does not suffice to control diabetic dyslipidemia and that significant numbers of diabetic subjects will need direct lipid management. Clinical trials are urgently needed to define the optimum management strategy for diabetic dyslipidemia.