In the May 10, 2004, issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine, researchers explored the role of diabetes among women with cardiovascular disease (CVD). Data showed that in the United States 498,863 women died from CVD in 2001, compared with 266,693 who died from cancer. High blood glucose levels are not the only contributing risk factors for CVD among diabetic women. Hypertension, dyslipidemia, and cigarette smoking play a role.
Therefore, the researchers outlined several strategies for treating women with diabetes and CVD, including controlling blood glucose levels in an effort to get the diabetes under control. The researchers also discussed diabetes prevention as a strategy. "Type 2 diabetes mellitus is preventable, and hyperglycemia [high blood glucose], the universal feature of diabetes, is treatable," noted the researchers. "Preventive measures include weight loss and increased physical activity."
Cholesterol management is another important tactic for lowering CVD among women with type 2 diabetes. "In light of [studies] highlighting the benefits of lipid-lowering medications, as well as data that show underutilization in individuals with diabetes and particularly women, clinicians should make special efforts not to neglect treatment of dyslipidemia in these populations," according to the researchers.