Aims/Hypothesis: To investigate secular trends in cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors during a decade of follow-up in a Middle Eastern cohort, and to compare observed trends between diabetic and non-diabetic populations. Methods: In a population of 6181 participants (2622 males and 3559 females), diabetes status and CVD risk factors were evaluated in 4 study phases from 1999-2011. 1045 subjects had type 2 diabetes mellitus at baseline and 5136 participants were diabetes-free. To examine the trends of CVD risk factors, generalized estimation equation models were constructed. The interaction between the diabetes status and each phase of the study was checked in a separate model. Results: During the follow-up period diabetic females significantly gained better control of their blood pressure, serum low density lipoprotein cholesterol and general and central obesity measures compared to non-diabetic counterparts, although 60% of them had high BP and 64% had high serum LDL-C levels till the end of the study. Diabetic males however, experienced significantly better control on their serum LDL-C and general and central obesity measures compared to their non-diabetic controls; but 24% of them were still smoker, 63% had high BP and 60% had high serum LDL-C levels at the end of the follow-up (all Psinteraction <0.05). Use of lipid-lowering and antihypertensive medications increased consistently in both diabetic and non-diabetic populations. Conclusions/Interpretation: Although CVD risk factors have been controlled to some extent among diabetic population in Iran, still high numbers of people with diabetes have uncontrolled CVD risk factors that prompt more attention.
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