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Gender Differences for Cardiovascular Risk With Diabetes

Studies find a nearly 40 percent greater risk of coronary issues in females

TUESDAY, Sept. 15, 2015 (HealthDay News) — Diabetes may be harder on women’s hearts than it is on men’s, according to research presented Monday at the annual meeting of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes in Stockholm, Sweden.

Xue Dong, of the Affiliated ZhongDa Hospital of Southeast University in Nanjing, China, and colleagues reviewed 19 studies conducted between 1966 and 2014. Combined, the studies included nearly 11 million people from North America, Europe, and Asia. Among these people, more than 106,000 fatal or nonfatal acute coronary syndrome events occurred. The researchers found that women with diabetes had a 38 percent greater risk of acute coronary syndrome than men with diabetes did.

The second study included data from hospitals across the Tuscan region of Italy. The information was collected between 2005 and 2012. The study included more than 3 million people, 47 percent of whom were male. The researchers, led by Giuseppe Seghieri, M.D., of the Regional Health Agency in Florence, found that women with diabetes had a 34 percent greater risk of heart attack than men with diabetes. And women with diabetes had a higher risk of heart attack than men regardless of age. The team found a similar risk for congestive heart failure or stroke in people with diabetes of both sexes.

“In this cohort of Tuscan population the excess risk of cardiovascular events linked with diabetes is significantly different between genders,” the authors conclude. “All this should focus attention on a timely, gender-oriented prevention of cardiovascular events in people with diabetes.”

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