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Abstract

Aim  To determine the impact of adding pharmacists to primary care teams on predicted 10-year risk of cardiovascular events in patients with Type 2 diabetes without established cardiovascular disease.

Methods  This was a pre-specified secondary analysis of randomized trial data. The main study found that, compared with usual care, addition of a pharmacist resulted in improvements in blood pressure, dyslipidaemia, and hyperglycaemia for primary care patients with Type 2 diabetes. In this sub-study, predicted 10-year risk of cardiovascular events at baseline and 1 year were calculated for patients free of cardiovascular disease at enrolment. The primary outcome was change in UK Prospective Diabetes Study (UKPDS) risk score; change in Framingham risk score was a secondary outcome.

Results  Baseline characteristics were similar between the 102 intervention patients and 93 control subjects: 59% women, median (interquartile range) age 57 (50–64) years, diabetes duration 3 (1–6.5) years, systolic blood pressure 128 (120–140) mmHg, total cholesterol 4.34 (3.75–5.04) mmol/l and HbA1c 54 mmol/mol (48–64 mmol/mol) [7.1% (6.5–8.0%)]. Median baseline UKPDS risk score was 10.2% (6.0–16.7%) for intervention patients and 9.5% (5.8–15.1%) for control subjects (P = 0.80). One-year post-randomization, the median absolute reduction in UKPDS risk score was 1.0% greater for intervention patients compared with control subjects (P = 0.032). Similar changes were seen with the Framingham risk score (median reduction 1.2% greater for intervention patients compared with control subjects, P = 0.048). The two risk scores were highly correlated (rho = 0.83; P < 0.001).

Conclusion  Adding pharmacists to primary care teams for 1 year significantly reduced the predicted 10-year risk of cardiovascular events for patients with Type 2 diabetes without established cardiovascular disease.