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Ann Epidemiol. 1994 Jan;4(1):67-74.

Diabetes mellitus and risk of idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy. The Washington, DC Dilated Cardiomyopathy Study.

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Department of Medicine, Georgetown University School of Medicine, Washington, DC.


An epidemiologic study was carried out to examine the possible role of diabetes mellitus and other factors in the development of idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy. Possible associations with diabetes and other factors were examined by comparing newly diagnosed case patients (n = 129) ascertained from five Washington, DC area hospitals with neighborhood control subjects (n = 258) identified using a random-digit dialing technique. The case patients and control subjects were matched by sex and 5-year age intervals and were compared in the analysis using conditional logistic regression methods. A statistically significant association was observed between idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy and history of diabetes (relative odds = 2.2; 95% confidence interval: 1.5 to 3.3). The association with diabetes was not explained by race, income, cigarette usage, or hypertension. A total of 28.7% (37/129) of the case patients had a reported history of diabetes, as compared with 13.6% (35/258) of the control subjects (P < 0.05). A possible interactive effect was also observed between diabetes and history of hypertension (P > 0.05). These findings support the view that diabetics, particularly those with a history of hypertension, may be at increased risk of idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy.

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