This site is intended for health professionals only

Diabetics "miss out on treatment"

New research has revealed that one in four patients with diabetes are not receiving the appropriate medications to combat complications such as heart disease and stroke.

Cardiovascular conditions are major causes of death and disease in diabetics, and diabetes patients over the age of 40 should be given medications that prevent the formation of blood clots (antiplatelets), or that reduce blood cholesterol levels (statins), to reduce the risk of such complications.

Research carried out at a GP practice in North East England and presented to the British Pharmaceutical Conference in Manchester shows that a quarter of those patients who should be given such treatment were not receiving the medication.

Head researcher Wasim Baqir said: "This primary care project shows that despite their high cardiovascular risk, one in four patients with diabetes are not being treated with prophylactic aspirin and/or statins - medicines that could prevent their death from complications of their disease."

"This study has already led to a change in the medication regimes for 22 patients - highlighting the importance of the role that pharmacists play in medicines management. They are the experts in medicines and make a significant contribution to patient safety."

Copyright © PA Business 2008

British Pharmaceutical Conference