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01-28-2017 | Dyslipidemia | Review | Article

Treatment of Dyslipidemias to Prevent Cardiovascular Disease in Patients with Type 2 Diabetes

Current Cardiology Reports

Authors: Maryam Khavandi, Francisco Duarte, Henry N. Ginsberg, Gissette Reyes-Soffer

Publisher: Springer US


Purpose of Review

Current preventive and treatment guidelines for type 2 diabetes have failed to decrease the incidence of comorbidities, such as dyslipidemia and ultimately heart disease. The goal of this review is to describe the physiological and metabolic lipid alterations that develop in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus. Questions addressed include the differences in lipid and lipoprotein metabolism that characterize the dyslipidemia of insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes mellitus. We also examine the relevance of the new AHA/ADA treatment guidelines to dyslipidemic individuals.

Recent Findings

In this review, we provide an update on the pathophysiology of diabetic dyslipidemia, including the role of several apolipoproteins such as apoC-III. We also point to new studies and new agents for the treatment of individuals with type 2 diabetes mellitus who need lipid therapies.


Type 2 diabetes mellitus causes cardiovascular disease via several pathways, including dyslipidemia characterized by increased plasma levels of apoB-lipoproteins and triglycerides, and low plasma concentrations of HDL cholesterol. Treatments to normalize the dyslipidemia and reduce the risk for cardiovascular events include the following: lifestyle and medication, particularly statins, and if necessary, ezetimibe, to significantly lower LDL cholesterol. Other treatments, more focused on triglycerides and HDL cholesterol, are less well supported by randomized clinical trials and should be used on an individual basis. Newer agents, particularly the PCSK9 inhibitors, show a great promise for even greater lowering of LDL cholesterol, but we await the results of ongoing clinical trials.

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