Aims To determine the incidence and predictors of, and effects of fenofibrate on silent myocardial infarction (MI) in a large contemporary cohort of patients with type 2 diabetes in the Fenofibrate Intervention and Event Lowering in Diabetes (FIELD) study.
Methods and results Routine electrocardiograms taken throughout the study were assessed by Minnesota-code criteria for the presence of new Q-waves without clinical presentation and analysed with blinding to treatment allocation and clinical outcome. Of all MIs, 36.8 were silent. Being male, older age, longer diabetes duration, prior cardiovascular disease (CVD), neuropathy, higher HbA1c, albuminuria, high serum creatinine, and insulin use all significantly predicted risk of clinical or silent MI. Fenofibrate reduced MI (clinical or silent) by 19 [hazard ratio (HR) 0.81, 95 confidence interval (CI) 0.69a??0.94; P = 0.006], non-fatal clinical MI by 24 (P = 0.01), and silent MI by 16 (P = 0.16). Among those having silent MI, fenofibrate reduced subsequent clinical CVD events by 78 (HR 0.22, 95 CI 0.08a??0.65; P = 0.003).
Conclusion Silent and clinical MI have similar risk factors and increase the risk of future CVD events. Fenofibrate reduces the risk of a first MI and substantially reduces the risk of further clinical CVD events after silent MI, supporting its use in type 2 diabetes.