Diabetes mellitus is growing in pandemic proportions and is associated with significant morbidity, mortality, and health care expenditure. Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) is the most common, accounting for about 90-95% of diagnosed diabetes in United States adults. Individuals with T2DM have a 2- to 3-fold increased risk of cardiovascular (CV) events compared with their non-diabetic counterparts, and CV mortality is responsible for around 80% of the mortality in T2DM. Emerging evidence suggest that in T2DM patients, hyperglycemia plays a little role in the progression of CV disease, and metabolic risk factors like insulin resistance, hypertension, obesity, and dyslipidemia are the major culprits in the initiation and progression of CV disease. This calls for development of drugs which control hyperglycemia as well as the various metabolic risk factors in T2DM patients to improve CV outcomes. Recent clinical trials of glucagon-like peptide 1 receptor agonists (GLP-1 RAs) and sodium glucose cotransporter-2 (SGLT-2) inhibitors showed encouraging CV outcomes in T2DM patients, which are attributed to the diverse extra-pancreatic effects of these medications. This review article will discuss the CV benefits of the newer incretin based therapies and SGLT-2 inhibitors as observed in their CV safety trials. As T2DM or insulin resistance syndrome, CV disease, and HF and frequently coexistent, it would be interesting to design studies evaluating the combinations of GLP-1 RAs, SGLT-2 inhibitors, and pioglitazone in T2DM patient at an elevated CV risk, and in non-diabetic patients with insulin resistance to study the possible CV protective role of these combinations.
Yandrapalli, S., & Aronow, W. (2017). Cardiovascular Benefits of the Newer Medications for Treating Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus. Journal of Thoracic Disease, 9 (7), 2124-2134. https://doi.org/10.21037/jtd.2017.06.70
Originally published in Journal of Thoracic Disease 2017;9(7):2124-2134. The original material can be found here.