The Rationale for Prandial Glycemic Control in Diabetes Mellitus
Background: Diabetes mellitus (DM) is of epidemic proportions worldwide, and its microvascular and macrovascular complications have been well described. Achieving glycemic control has been demonstrated to reduce patients' risk of developing these complications. Objective: The objective of this article was to examine how prandial hyperglycemia-especially postprandial hyperglycemia (PPHG)-affects overall glycemic control and the complications of DM and to discuss the pharmacologic agents available to reduce PPHG. Methods: Materials used for this article were identified through a MEDLINE search of the literature (1975-2006). English-language randomized, controlled, prospective, cohort, and observational studies were chosen using the search terms postprandial hyperglycemia, oxidative stress, cardiovascular disease, macrovascular disease, microvascular disease, lipidemia, and coagulation. Results: Data show that controlling prandial hyperglycemia reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) andmicrovascular complications, lowers glycosylated hemoglobin levels, causes less oxidative stress, and leads to a more favorable coagulation and postprandial lipidemia profile. Guidelines for targeting PPHG are becoming standard, and various pharmacologic agents (eg, a-glucosidase inhibitors, amylin analogues, incretin mimetics, rapid-acting insulins and insulin analogues, meglitinide analogues) that target PPHG may also improve overall glycemic control and reduce CVD risk. Conclusions: Although the level of hyperglycemia that leads to microvascular and macrovascular complications inpatients with DM remains to be elucidated, it appears prudent to address prandial hyperglycemia, especially PPHG, rather than focus solely on fasting glucose levels. Clinicians should consider incorporating agents that lower PPHG in their treatment of patients with DM. © 2007 Excerpta Medica, Inc.
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