The impact of frailty on the effectiveness and safety of intensive glucose control and blood pressure-lowering therapy for people with type 2 diabetes: Results from the ADVANCE trial

Tu N. Nguyen, Katie Harris, Mark Woodward, John Chalmers, Mark Cooper, Pavel Hamet, Stephen Harrap, Simon Heller, Stephen MacMahon, Giuseppe Mancia, Michel Marre, Neil Poulter, Anthony Rogers, Bryan Williams, Sophia Zoungas, Clara K. Chow, Richard I. Lindley

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25 Citations (Scopus)


OBJECTIVE To develop a frailty index (FI) and explore the relationship of frailty to subsequent adverse outcomes on the effectiveness and safety of more intensive control of both blood glucose and blood pressure (BP), among participants with type 2 diabetes in the Action in Diabetes and Vascular Disease: Preterax and Diamicron Modified Release Controlled Evaluation (ADVANCE) trial. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS Cox proportional hazard models were used to estimate the effectiveness and safety of intensive glucose control and BP intervention according to frailty (defined as FI >0.21) status. The primary outcomes were macro- and microvascular events. The secondary outcomes were all-cause mortality, cardiovascular mortality, severe hypoglycemia, and discontinuation of BP treatment due to hypotension/dizziness. RESULTS There were 11,140 participants (mean age, 65.8 years; 42.5% women, 25.7% frail). Frailty was an independent predictor of all primary outcomes and secondary outcomes. The effect of intensive glucose treatment on primary outcomes showed some evidence of attenuation in the frail: hazard ratios for combined major macro- and microvascular events 1.03 (95% CI 0.90-1.19) in the frail versus 0.84 (95% CI 0.74-0.94) in the nonfrail (P = 0.02). A similar trend was observed with BP intervention. Severe hypoglycemia rates (per 1,000 person-years) were higher in the frail: 8.39 (6.15-10.63) vs. 4.80 (3.84-5.76) in nonfrail (P < 0.001). There was no significant difference in discontinuation of BP treatment between frailty groups. CONCLUSIONS It was possible to retrospectively estimate frailty in a trial population, and this FI identified those at higher risk of poor outcomes. Participants with frailty had some attenuation of benefit from intensive glucose-lowering and BP-lowering treatments.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1622-1629
Number of pages8
JournalDiabetes Care
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2021

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