Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community


    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Diabetes Health Center

Font Size

Women With Diabetes: Heart Risks Undertreated

Differences in Treatment for Men and Women May Raise Women's Risk of Heart Disease

WebMD Health News

March 18, 2005 -- Heart disease risk factors in women with diabetes tend to be treated less aggressively than in men, according to a new study.

Researchers say those disparities in care may explain why the rate of heart-related deaths among women with diabetes has risen during the last 30 years, despite improvements among men with diabetes and the population in general.

The study showed that women with diabetes were less likely than men with diabetes to be treated with aspirin and cholesterol-lowering drugs, and modifiable risk factors such as blood sugar, cholesterol, and blood pressure levels were less likely to be within recommended levels

Diabetes dramatically increases the risk of heart disease among both men and women, but this study shows that other modifiable risk factors for heart disease may not be treated adequately in women with diabetes.

Women's Heart Risks Undertreated

In the study, researchers compared data on 3,849 men and women treated for diabetes at five major academic centers in the U.S. from 2000 to 2003. The results appear in the March issue of Diabetes Care.

The results showed that women with diabetes and heart disease were 37% less likely to have blood sugar levels within the recommended levels and those without heart disease were 16% less likely to have healthy blood sugar levels. Blood sugar levels beyond the recommended levels increase the risk of diabetes-related complications and heart disease.

Other findings include:

  • Women with diabetes without heart disease were 18% less likely to be prescribed a cholesterol-lowering drug.
  • Women with diabetes were about a third less likely to be prescribed aspirin.
  • When treated for high cholesterol, women with diabetes and heart disease were 20% less likely to have LDL "bad" cholesterol levels within the recommended limit.
  • When treated for high blood pressure, women with diabetes and heart disease were 25% less likely to have blood pressure levels within the recommended levels.

Researchers say these differences in treatment may explain the excessive burden of heart disease in women with diabetes.

Today on WebMD

Diabetic tools
Symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, and more.
woman flexing muscles
10 strength training exercises.
Blood sugar test
12 practical tips.
Tom Hanks
Stars living with type 1 or type 2.
kenneth fujioka, md
Can Vinegar Treat Diabetes
Middle aged person
Home Healthcare

Prediabetes How to Prevent Type 2 Diabetes
type 2 diabetes
food fitness planner