Pre-diabetes might increase Stoke Risk

credit: National Cancer Institute Daniel Sone (Photographer) - PD

(Best Syndication News) - A study found that some patients identified as having pre-diabetes may be at a higher risk for having a stroke. The study was published online at bmj.com.

Pre-diabetes is typically diagnosed with a fasting blood glucose test. The person fasts for 12 hours and is tested after not eating any food. The normal range for blood glucose after a fast is between 70.2 to 100 mg/dl. The pre-diabetes range for this test is between 100 to 126 mg/dl.

Pre-diabetes can be resolved with diet and exercise. However, if pre-diabetes is left untreated it could become type 2 diabetes. Unfortunately, pre-diabetes patients have the same vascular risk factors as those that have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. These factors include high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and obesity. However, the future stroke risk had not been recognized in pre-diabetes patients.

Researchers from the University of California looked at data from 15 studies that have 760,925 participants. They wanted to see if pre-diabetes and an increased risk of stroke were related. What the researchers found is that stroke risk and pre-diabetes depended on the guidelines defining the blood glucose ranges. The new standard guidelines are lower for pre-diabetes.

If they used the 2003 standards issued by the American Diabetes Association (ADA) of fasting glucose results between 100 to 109 mg/dl there was no associated stroke risk. However, if they used the 1997 standards issued by the ADA of 110 – 125 mg/dl, there was a 21 percent increased chance of having a stroke.

Based on the researchers’ results, they concluded that there might be a threshold effect with the relationship of blood glucose levels and stroke risk. The risk of stroke begins to increase once the fasting glucose level is at 110 mg/dl. Pre-diabetes with fasting glucose between 110 to 125 mg/dl were at a “modestly higher risk of future stroke” reported the study authors.

The researchers also caution that some other factors remain unmeasured and that the quality of the evidence was variable. These unmeasured factors could include things such as age, obesity, and hypertension. In order to validate the study findings, more research might be needed.

By: Marsha Quinn
Health Reporter

ref: 1, 2

Correction: The initial article indicated the 2003 guidelines to be 100-125 when in fact they were between 100 and 109.

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