People with Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), compared with non-diabetic individuals, have increased cardiovascular risk. Part of this excess risk is associated with a higher prevalence of other cardiovascular risk factors in these patients, such as obesity, dyslipidaemia, and hypertension. However, the increased cardiovascular risk present in T2DM cannot be attributed entirely to the high prevalence of traditional risk factors and other non-traditional risk factors may also be important for people with T2DM. Evidence suggests that in patients with T2DM, treatment of cardiovascular risk factors is very important in reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD). The poor control of risk factors observed in the diabetic population supports the need for more aggressive treatment of modifiable cardiovascular risk factors, especially in patients with previous CVD. There is little evidence on the independent association between traditional and non-traditional cardiovascular risk factors, however these risk factors do not appear in isolation and are produced at the same time, exacerbating the risk of a cardiovascular event. Targeting multiple markers of CVD risk offers the best chance of improving CVD outcomes. The objective of this review is to highlight the importance of managing cardiovascular risk factors in patients with T2DM.
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