Cardiovascular Death Rate Among Americans With Diabetes Drops 40 Percent

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Here is a statistic to warm the heart-literally: The death rate from heart disease and stroke among American adults with diabetes dropped 40 percent from 1997 to 2006, according to the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta. The overall mortality rate among people with diabetes dropped 23 percent.

Researchers at the CDC, who studied data from 250,000 patients, said that a combination of factors may have led to the dramatic decrease in mortality:

• People with diabetes are taking better care of themselves. Even though many are overweight, they are smoking less than previous generations and are more likely to be physically active.

• Treatment of the disease has improved, including medicines for high blood pressure and high cholesterol, as well as combination therapies that have a strong effect on blood sugar control.

The CDC cautioned, however, that the improved statistics must be understood in light of the fact that people with diabetes still die from cardiovascular disease at twice the rate of people without diabetes.

Source: The Centers for Disease Control (http://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2012/p0522_heart_disease.html)

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