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Original research
Predictive models for cardiovascular and kidney outcomes in patients with type 2 diabetes: systematic review and meta-analyses


Objective To inform a clinical practice guideline (BMJ Rapid Recommendations) considering sodium glucose cotransporter-2 inhibitors and glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonists for treatment of adults with type 2 diabetes, we summarised the available evidence regarding the performance of validated risk models on cardiovascular and kidney outcomes in these patients.

Methods We systematically searched bibliographic databases in January 2020 to identify observational studies evaluating risk models for all-cause and cardiovascular mortality, heart failure (HF) hospitalisations, end-stage kidney disease (ESKD), myocardial infarction (MI) and ischaemic stroke in ambulatory adults with type 2 diabetes. Using a random effects model, we pooled discrimination measures for each model and outcome, separately, and descriptively summarised calibration plots, when available. We used the Prediction Model Risk of Bias Assessment Tool to assess risk of bias of each included study and the Grading of Recommendations, Assessment, Development, and Evaluation approach to evaluate our certainty in the evidence.

Results Of 22 589 publications identified, 15 observational studies reporting on seven risk models proved eligible. Among the seven models with >1 validation cohort, the Risk Equations for Complications of Type 2 Diabetes (RECODe) had the best calibration in primary studies and the highest pooled discrimination measures for the following outcomes: all-cause mortality (C-statistics 0.75, 95% CI 0.70 to 0.80; high certainty), cardiovascular mortality (0.79, 95% CI 0.75 to 0.84; low certainty), ESKD (0.73, 95% CI 0.52 to 0.94; low certainty), MI (0.72, 95% CI 0.69 to 0.74; moderate certainty) and stroke (0.71, 95% CI 0.68 to 0.74; moderate certainty). This model does not, however, predict risk of HF hospitalisations.

Conclusion Of available risk models, RECODe proved to have satisfactory calibration in primary validation studies and acceptable discrimination superior to other models, though with high risk of bias in most primary studies.

Trial registration number CRD42020168351.

  • diabetes

Data availability statement

All data relevant to the study are included in the article or uploaded as supplementary information and are widely available.

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