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Prog Cardiovasc Dis. 1985 Jan-Feb;27(4):255-70.

Diabetic cardiomyopathy.


Diabetes mellitus is associated with a specific cardiomyopathy. This is evident from the clinical-pathological work and the epidemiologic data from the Framingham study. Noninvasive studies of diabetics have shown alterations in systolic and diastolic function that may ultimately lead to clinical heart failure. The relationship of these cardiac changes to the type of diabetes, its duration, and its severity is not settled. However, a correlation between changes in heart function and other complications of diabetes has been demonstrated. Insufficient prospective data is available from noninvasive studies to establish the frequency of progression from subclinical cardiac dysfunction to overt congestive failure. The pathogenesis of this disorder is still uncertain. Pathological studies have shown changes in the intramural arteries, arterioles, and capillaries but their functional significance is uncertain. Experimental studies have shown interstitial changes leading to an apparently less compliant left ventricle in the diabetic dog and monkey. In the diabetic rat reversible changes were found in myocardial function, related to changes in contractile proteins and intracellular calcium metabolism. In both species, the response to anoxia or ischemia was altered in the presence of diabetes. However, irreversible depression of the contractile element was not found in most animal studies of isolated diabetes. In contrast, the combination of hypertension and diabetes leads to substantial cardiac damage and circulatory congestion, both in clinical and experimental investigations. Clearly much more work must be carried out to understand the pathogenesis, treatment, and ultimately the prevention of diabetic cardiomyopathy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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