Risk factors associated with the progression from impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) to NIDDM were examined in data from six prospective studies. IGT and NIDDM were defined in all studies by World Health Organization (WHO) criteria, and baseline risk factors were measured at the time of first recognition of IGT. The studies varied in size from 177 to 693 participants with IGT, and included men and women followed from 2 to 27 years after the recognition of IGT. Across the six studies, the incidence rate of NIDDM was 57.2/1,000 person-years and ranged from 35.8/1,000 to 87.3/1,000 person-years. Although baseline measures of fasting and 2-h postchallenge glucose levels were both positively associated with NIDDM incidence, incidence rates were sharply higher for those in the top quartile of fasting plasma glucose levels, but increased linearly with increasing 2-h postchallenge glucose quartiles. Incidence rates were higher among the Hispanic, Mexican-American, Pima, and Nauruan populations than among Caucasians. The effect of baseline age on NIDDM incidence rates differed among the studies; the rates did not increase or rose only slightly with increasing baseline age in three of the studies and formed an inverted U in three studies. In all studies, estimates of obesity (including BMI, waist-to-hip ratio, and waist circumference) were positively associated with NIDDM incidence. BMI was associated with NIDDM incidence independently of fasting and 2-h post challenge glucose levels in the combined analysis of all six studies and in three cohorts separately, but not in the three studies with the highest NIDDM incidence rates. Sex and family history of diabetes were generally not related to NIDDM progression. This analysis indicates that persons with IGT are at high risk and that further refinement of risk can be made by other simple measurements. The ability to identify persons at high risk of NIDDM should facilitate clinical trials in diabetes prevention.

This content is only available via PDF.