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The association of patient age with cardiovascular disease risk factor treatment and control in diabetes

BACKGROUND: While inadequate treatment intensification may contribute to sub-optimal CVD risk factor control in older patients with diabetes, the relationship between patient age and treatment intensification is largely unexplored. OBJECTIVE: To examine differences in treatment intensification and control for blood pressure (BP), lipids and A1c in older vs. younger adults with diabetes. METHODS: A total of 161,697 Kaiser Permanente Northern California adult diabetes patients were stratified by age (<50, 50-64, 65-74 and 75-85) and assessed for control of A1c (<8%), LDL-c (<100 mg/dl) and SBP (<140 mmHg). Probit models assessed the marginal effects of patient age on treatment intensification and control for all three CVD risk factors. RESULTS: Patients aged 50-64 and 65-74 were significantly more likely to receive treatment intensification for elevated SBP than patients under 50 (74% and 76% vs. 71%) and significantly less likely to receive treatment intensification for elevated A1c (73% and 72% vs. 76%), with no differences noted for LDL-c treatment. Older patients had significantly worse SBP control, but better control of A1c and LDL-c. CONCLUSIONS: Both treatment intensification rates and control of BP, A1c and LDL cholesterol control varied somewhat by age, suggesting room for further improvement in treatment intensification and control.

Authors: Subramanian U; Schmittdiel JA; Gavin N; Traylor A; Uratsu CS; Selby JV; Mangione CM

J Gen Intern Med. 2009 Sep;24(9):1049-52. Epub 2009 Jul 15.

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