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There is a long debate about putative cardioprotective effects of alcohol. However, prevalence of metabolic syndrome (MetS) in men and women that use alcohol has been inconsistent in the literature.
The aim of this study was to compare the prevalence of MetS in patients with a diagnosis of alcohol dependence, who are currently abstinent in a controlled environment, and in control subjects followed in primary care from a similar region in Northern Germany.
One-hundred ninety seven men and women with alcohol dependence during behavioural treatment in a controlled environment were compared to 1158 subjects from primary care from a similar region in northern Germany. We used the AHA/NHBLI criteria to determine the rate of MetS and each single criterion of MetS in both groups.
The prevalence of MetS was almost twice as high in men and women with alcohol dependence compared to control subjects (30.6% vs. 17.0%). With respect to the single criteria, elevations were found for fasting glucose and blood pressure in both genders and for triglycerides in women only. HDL-cholesterol was higher in men and women with alcohol dependence.
Our results demonstrate an increased rate of the MetS, increased blood pressure and dysregulation of glucose and lipid metabolism in alcohol dependent patients. Whether high HDL-cholesterol in this context has cardioprotective effects remain doubtful.
The metabolic syndrome (MetS) is an important risk factor for the development of type-2 diabetes and coronary artery disease. However, little is known about the prevalence of the MetS in patients with borderline personality disorder (BPD).
We aimed to compare the MetS prevalence in patients with borderline personality disorder (BPD) with control subjects followed in primary care from a similar region.
One-hundred thirty five BPD patients according to DSM-IV diagnostic criteria were compared to 1009 subjects from primary care. We used the American Heart Association/National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (AHA/NHBLI) criteria to determine the rate of MetS and of each individual MetS criterion. For comparison purposes we calculated age-standardized rates of the MetS and their 95%-confidence intervals (CI).
The age-standardized prevalence of MetS was more than double in patients with BPD compared to control subjects (23.3% vs. 10.6%, p < 0.05).
Within BPD patients, an increased rate of MetS was associated with higher BMI (Wald = 10.2; p = 0.004), age (Wald = 4.7; p = 0.03), treatment with second generation antipsychotics (quetiapine, olanzapine and clozapine) (Wald = 4.6; p = 0.032), dysthymia (Wald = 4.6; p = 0.031), panic disorder (Wald = 4.6; p = 0.032), benzodiazepine dependency (Wald = 5.9; p = 0.015), and binge-eating disorder (Wald = 5.4; p = 0.02).
Our results demonstrate an increased MetS rate, dysregulated glucose and lipid metabolism in patients with BPD. Independent predictors of MetS in BPD patients require further study to inform targeted prevention efforts in this population. Cardiometabolic monitoring and careful screening for physical health conditions among people with BPD is warranted.
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