Revista médica de Chile
versión impresa ISSN 0034-9887
RIVERA M, Solange; URIBE-SAN MARTIN, Reinaldo; BELMAR N, Nicolás y PEREZ L, Alfonso. Critically appraised article: Effects of intensive glucose lowering in type 2 diabetes. Rev. méd. Chile [online]. 2009, vol.137, n.11, pp. 1527-1531. ISSN 0034-9887. http://dx.doi.org/10.4067/S0034-98872009001100020.
Epidemiologic studies have shown a relationship between glycated hemoglobin levels and cardiovascular events in patients with type 2 diabetes. We investigated whether intensive therapy to target normal glycated hemoglobin levels would reduce cardiovascular events in patients with type 2 diabetes who laid either established cardiovascular disease or additional cardiovascular risk factors. Methods: In this randomized study 10,251 patients (mean age, 62.2 years) with a median glycated hemoglobin level of 8.1% were assigned to receive intensive therapy (targeting a glycated hemoglobin level below 6.0%) or standard therapy (targeting a level from 7.0 to 7.9%). Of these patients, 38% were women, and 35% had had a previous cardiovascular event. The primary outcome was a composite of nonfatal myocardial infarction, nonfatal stroke, or death from cardiovascular causes. The finding of higher mortality in the intensive-therapy group led to a discontinuation of intensive therapy after a mean of 3.5 years of follow-up. Results: At 1 year, stable median glycated hemoglobin levels of 6.4% and 7.5% were achieved in the intensive-therapy group and the standard-therapy group, respectively. During follow-up, the primary outcome occurred in 352 patients in the intensive-therapy group, as compared with 371 in the standard-therapy group (hazard ratio, 0.90; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.78 to 1.04; P=0.16). At the same time, 257patients in the intensive-therapy group died, as compared with 203 patients in the standard-therapy group (hazard ratio, 1.22; 95% CI, 1.01 to 1.46; P=0.04). Hypoglycemia requiring assistance and weight gain of more than 10 kg were more frequent in the intensive-therapy group (P<0.001). Conclusions: As compared with standard therapy, the use of intensive therapy to target normal glycated hemoglobin levels for 3.5years increased mortality and did not significantly reduce major cardiovascular events. These findings identify a previously unrecognized harm of intensive glucose lowering in high-risk patients with type 2 diabetes. (ClinicalTrials.govnumber, NCT00000620.).