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J Cardiovasc Transl Res. 2010 Oct;3(5):580-96. doi: 10.1007/s12265-010-9197-3. Epub 2010 Jul 1.

Risk factors preceding type 2 diabetes and cardiomyopathy.

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Biochemistry Unit, Department of Pre-Clinical Sciences, Faculty of Medical Sciences, The University of the West Indies, St. Augustine, Trinidad, Trinidad and Tobago.


Type 2 diabetes (T2DM) and its complications such as cardiomyopathy, contribute significantly to morbidity and mortality worldwide. Increased adoption of westernized diets and decreased physical activity are contributing to the obesity epidemic which, in turn, increases the risk for T2DM. Other risk factors for T2DM include insulin resistance, dyslipidemia, hypertension, metabolic syndrome, and a genetic predisposition. Risk measures for assessing these factors include family history, blood pressure, body weight, waist circumference, fasting glucose, insulin, and lipid levels, and calculated indices such as BMI, HOMA, and QUIKI. Most of these risk measures routinely done in annual check-ups, should help a primary care physician in making an early diagnosis of impending diabetic condition. The underlying mechanisms of these clinical, anthropometric and biochemical risk measures may also be involved in the etiology of diabetes and its complications. Their levels and changes over time therefore, may indeed reflect the disease process. Early and continued assessment of diabetes risk, as part of patient care, will help identify individuals most likely to develop diabetes and allow for early interventions to reduce risk factors as well as delay or may even prevent disease onset. In T2DM patients, ongoing measurement of risk markers and implementation of intervention where appropriate will improve the diabetic condition, decrease risk of cardiovascular and other complications, and decrease morbidity.

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