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Diabetes Obes Metab. 2011 Apr;13(4):313-25. doi: 10.1111/j.1463-1326.2010.01342.x.

Therapies for diabetic dyslipidaemia.

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  • 1Department of Endocrinology, University of Alabama, Birmingham, AL 35205, USA.


Correction of diabetic dyslipidaemia in diabetic patients is the most important factor in reducing cardiac risk. Diabetic dyslipidaemia is characterized by elevated triglycerides, low total high-density lipoprotein (HDL) and small dense low-density lipoprotein (LDL) particles. The most important therapeutic goal in diabetic dyslipidaemia is correction of the non-HDL-cholesterol (HDL-C) level. Glycaemic control with particular attention to postprandial glucose control plays a role not only in improving dyslipidaemia but also in lowering cardiac events. Pioglitazone is particularly effective for improving the manifestations of diabetic dyslipidaemia, in addition to its favorable effects on systemic inflammation and hyperglycaemia. Use of statins in addition to lifestyle change is recommended in most if not all type 2 diabetic patients and the goal should be to lower the LDL to a level recommended for the patient with existing cardiovascular disease (CVD) (non-HDL-C level <100 mg/dl). In addition, therapies for normalization of HDL and triglyceride levels should be deployed. Most patients with type 2 diabetes (T2D) will require combining a lipid-lowering therapy with therapeutic lifestyle changes to achieve optimal lipid levels. Combinations usually include two or more of the following: a statin, nicotinic acid, omega-3 fats and bile acid sequestrants (BASs). Fibrates may also be of use in diabetic patients with persistently elevated triglycerides and depressed HDL-C levels, although their role in lowering adverse CV events is questionable.

© 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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