The impact of gender on the long-term morbidity and mortality of patients with type 2 diabetes receiving structured personal care: A 13-year follow-up study

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Aims/hypothesis: The aim of this study was to assess gender differences in mortality and morbidity during 13 follow-up years after 6 years of structured personal care in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus.

Methods: In the Diabetes Care in General Practice (DCGP) multicentre, cluster-randomised, controlled trial ( registration no. NCT01074762), 1,381 patients newly diagnosed with type 2 diabetes were randomised to receive 6 years of either structured personal care or routine care. The intervention included regular follow-up, individualised goal setting and continuing medical education of general practitioners participating in the intervention. Patients were re-examined at the end of intervention. This observational analysis followed 970 patients for 13 years thereafter using national registries. Outcomes were all-cause mortality, incidence of diabetes-related death, any diabetes-related endpoint, myocardial infarction, stroke, peripheral vascular disease and microvascular disease.

Results: In women, but not men, a lower HR for structured personal care vs routine care emerged for any diabetes-related endpoint (0.65, p = 0.004, adjusted; 73.4 vs 107.7 events per 1,000 patient-years), diabetes-related death (0.70, p = 0.031; 34.6 vs 45.7), all-cause mortality (0.74, p = 0.028; 55.5 vs 68.5) and stroke (0.59, p = 0.038; 15.6 vs 28.9). This effect was different between men and women for diabetes-related death (interaction p = 0.015) and all-cause mortality (interaction p = 0.005).

Conclusions/interpretation: Compared with routine care, structured personal diabetes care reduced all-cause mortality and diabetes-related death in women but not in men. This gender difference was also observed for any diabetes-related outcome and stroke but was not statistically significant after extensive multivariate adjustment. These observational results from a post hoc analysis of a randomised controlled trial cannot be explained by intermediate outcomes like HbA1c alone, but involves complex social and cultural issues of gender. There is a need to rethink treatment schemes for both men and women to gain benefit from intensified treatment efforts.
Original languageEnglish
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)275-285
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2016

ID: 145632186