Heart Beat September 2007 Issue

Heart Advisor: 09/07

Patients with Type 2 diabetes mellitus should be on statin or fibrate therapy to protect against the development of peripheral neuropathy, according to research presented at the American Diabetes Association conference in June. Peripheral neuropathy can manifest in many ways, from a tingling feeling in the extremities and a sensitivity to touch to more extreme cases of muscle wasting, organ or gland dysfunction, or paralysis. The five-year study of more than 500 diabetics in Australia showed that patients on fibrates or statins, both medications used to combat high cholesterol, cut their risk of developing peripheral neuropathy by 48 percent and 35 percent respectively. Researchers were especially encouraged by the findings because there are currently no medical treatments to cure peripheral neuropathy.

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