APR 14, 2020 6:40 AM PDT

Personalized Treatments for Patients with Diabetes and Heart Disease

WRITTEN BY: Annie Lennon

Often, people who have Type 2 diabetes are at an increased risk for cardiovascular disease. This is because they are usually overwight or obese, and have high blood pressure and cholesterol levels. New research has found that patients with both conditions require different treatments to those who have just one, and that there are several new drugs able to successfully treat both conditions together. 

“Recent scientific studies have shown that people with T2D may need more aggressive or different medical and surgical treatments compared to people with CAD who do not have T2D." says Suzanne V. Arnold, associate professor of medicine at the University of Missouri Kansas City. 

Currently, Metformin is the most frequently recommended treatment to lower blood sugar levels in people with Type 2 diabetes. While it can lead to mild weight loss, has seemingly no effect on the cardiovascular system and is generally considered safe to use, new medications may be better able to both reduce blood sugar levels and the risk of developing cardiovascular disease. 

A recent study looking at sodium-glucose cotransporter inhibitors (SGLT2 inhibitors) found that the drug not only reduces blood sugar levels, but also a person’s chances of dying from cardiovascular disease. In particular, it was found that the drug reduced patient’s risk of developing heart failure, slowed the progression of chronic kidney disease and helped them lose weight. 

Glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonists (GLP-1 receptor agonists) have also shown some promise. An injectable medication that both lowers blood sugar levels and can lead to weight loss, a recent study had mixed results on its ability to reduce the risk of developing cardiovascular disease. The drug has however been shown to reduce the risk of major cardiovascular events including heart attacks and strokes. 

Researchers also found that patients with Type 2 diabetes and coronary artery disease (CAD) who undergo coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery to widen narrowed blood vessels have a reduced risk of dying within 5 years and having a heart attack or recurrent angina than if they were treated with angioplasty or stenting. Meanwhile, for those who only have CAD, the advantage of having a bypass over stenting was not so dramatic. 



Sources: EurekAlert, News Medical

About the Author
  • Annie Lennon is a writer whose work also appears in Medical News Today, Psych Central, Psychology Today, and other outlets. When she's not writing, she is COO of Xeurix, an HR startup that assesses jobfit from gamified workplace simulations.
You May Also Like
APR 01, 2021
Health & Medicine
Flavanol-rich Foods Protect Heart from Stress
APR 01, 2021
Flavanol-rich Foods Protect Heart from Stress
Drinking hot cocoa is comforting on cold winter nights, and new research from the University of Birmingham shows that it ...
APR 27, 2021
Cardiology
Excess Belly Weight Raises Heart Disease Risk Regardless of BMI
APR 27, 2021
Excess Belly Weight Raises Heart Disease Risk Regardless of BMI
Research has suggested that excess weight around the midsection of a person's body is a much better predictor of poor he ...
MAY 01, 2021
Cannabis Sciences
Early Use of Cannabis Linked to Heart Disease
MAY 01, 2021
Early Use of Cannabis Linked to Heart Disease
While the dangers of cigarette smoking to cardiovascular health are widely known, those for cannabis have been less rese ...
JUL 11, 2021
Cannabis Sciences
How Does Cannabis Affect Birth Control?
JUL 11, 2021
How Does Cannabis Affect Birth Control?
According to the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), between 2015 and 2017, 64.9% of women in the US w ...
JUL 16, 2021
Cardiology
Therapeutic Exosome Spray May One Day Aid Heart Attack Recovery
JUL 16, 2021
Therapeutic Exosome Spray May One Day Aid Heart Attack Recovery
When the flow of blood to the heart is blocked, heart cells don't get enough oxygen and begin to die; this is a heart at ...
AUG 15, 2021
Neuroscience
Cholesterol in the Brain Linked to Alzheimer's Plaques
AUG 15, 2021
Cholesterol in the Brain Linked to Alzheimer's Plaques
Cholesterol levels in the brain tightly regulate the production of amyloid-beta plaques in the brain, a key feature of A ...
Loading Comments...