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Hypertension (HTN) and diabetes mellitus (DM) have become increasingly prevalent globally. As of the year 2000, an estimated 972 million individuals worldwide (26%) had HTN—a number that is projected to rise to 1.56 billion (29%) by 2025.w1 DM affects an estimated 285 million individuals (6%) globally with a projection of 439 million adults (8%) being affected by 2030.w2 HTN is more common in individuals with DM than in the general population, with estimates of the prevalence of HTN in DM ranging from 40–80%.w3 Patients with DM are more likely to develop HTN with the incidence of HTN being twofold higher in those with DM relative to similar aged individuals without DMw4 (see summary in figure 1).
Patients with DM carry a risk of cardiovascular (CV) death similar to that of patients with a previous myocardial infarction.1 In a recent study based on the Framingham cohort, the population attributable risk from HTN in patients with DM was 30% for all cause death and 25% for any CV event. Conversely, after adjusting for HTN, the population attributable risk from DM was 7% for all cause death and 9% for any CV event in the group. The findings reaffirmed those of previous studies that the presence of HTN is likely the strongest driver of CV outcomes in diabetic patients.2
Despite increasing evidence of the contribution of blood pressure (BP) to CV risk in DM, diabetic patients are less likely to achieve target BPs relative to non-DM patients.3
BP characteristics in DM
Patients with diabetes have more isolated systolic HTN and, because of autonomic neuropathy, experience less reduction in …
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