Hypoglycemic events may predict poor outcomes in type 2 diabetics

Episodes of severe hypoglycemia in type 2 diabetics may contribute to more cardiovascular complications and an increased risk of death, according to a new study.

Researchers from the University of Sydney in Australia tracked the medical records of 11,140 patients with type 2 diabetes for a period of five years. A total of 231 of these participants experienced a severe hypoglycemic event during the study period.

Among these individuals, 16.8 percent experience a macrovascular event and 19.5 percent died. This compared to 10.2 percent and 9 percent respectively among individuals who did not experience a hypoglycemic event.

Rather than being a cause of these adverse outcomes, researchers wrote in their report, which was published in the New England Journal of Medicine, that hypoglycemic events may be an indicator of vulnerability to cardiovascular complications.

"It is possible that hypoglycemia contributes to adverse outcomes," the authors said in a release, according to Medpage Today. "But these analyses indicate that hypoglycemia is just as likely to be a marker of vulnerability to such events."

Using hypoglycemic events as a potential indicator of cardiovascular risk, doctors may be able to more effectively screen their patients for possible complications.
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