To evaluate the coexistence of sympathetic overactivity and hypertension in type 2 diabetic patients, a population-based study was conducted of newly-diagnosed type 2 diabetic patients recruited from a single community located at northern Taiwan. This study included 2877 (male 1382, female 1495) middle-aged ethnic Chinese adults, aged 45-65 years. Of the 1382 males, 67 had newly-diagnosed type 2 diabetes mellitus, whereas 75 of the 1495 females had type 2 diabetes. The data showed that about 39% of diabetic patients had borderline hypertension (mean blood pressure 141/91 mmHg) whereas the average incidence in non-diabetic subjects was 15.5%. The borderline hypertensive diabetic patients had significantly higher heart rates (mean 78.8 vs. 69.3 beats/min; P <0.001) than control subjects. However, the cardiac index was similar in both control and diabetic subjects (mean 2.48 vs. 2.53 l/min/m2; P > 0.05). Our data show that sympathetic overactivity and increased incidence of hypertension actually existed in these type 2 diabetic patients of Chinese origin.
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