Lower blood pressure associated with higher mortality in elderly diabetic patients (ZODIAC-12)

Objective: to investigate the relationship between blood pressure over time and mortality in elderly patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). Design: prospective observational cohort stud). Setting: primary care, Zwolle, The Netherlands. Subjects: patients with T2DM aged 60 years and older (n = 881). The cohort was divided into two age categories: 60-75 years and older than 75 years. Methods: updated means for systolic, diastolic and pulse pressures were calculated after a median follow-up time of 9.8 years. These values were used as time-dependent covariates in a Cox proportional hazard model. Main outcome measures were all-cause and cardiovascular mortality. Results: all of the blood pressure measures were inversely related to all-cause mortality in elderly diabetic patients (>75 years). Furthermore, these relationships were specifically found in elderly patients treated with antihypertensive medication at baseline. A decrease of 10 mm Hg in systolic blood pressure, diastolic blood pressure and pulse pressure led to a mortality increase of 20% [95% confidence interval (95% CI): 12-27%], 26% [95% CI: 12%-38%] and 20% [95% CI: 10%-29%], respectively. In the low age group (60-75 years), no relationship was found between blood pressure and mortality. Conclusions: blood pressure is a marker for mortality in elderly T2DM patients; however, the relationship is inverse

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