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UKPDS: The UK Prospective Diabetes Study

The UK Prospective Diabetes Study (UKPDS) was a landmark study that showed that tight control of blood glucose and of blood pressure is beneficial to people with type 2 diabetes.

The UKPDS was a multicenter trial of diabetes treatment in 5,102 patients with newly-diagnosed type 2 diabetes. It ran for twenty years (1977 to 1997) in 23 UK clinical sites. 4209 patients were randomly assigned to receive either conventional therapy (dietary restriction) or intensive therapy (either sulfonylurea or insulin or, in overweight patients, metformin) for glucose control.

The UKPDS showed that:

  • "intensive therapy to reduce glycaemia is worthwhile as it reduces risk of complications
  • "tight blood pressure control is worthwhile as it reduces risk of complications
  • "there are no major differences between the therapies tested
  • "reduction in risk of complications of diabetes is a realisable goal"3

After completion of the UKPDS, a ten year post-trial follow-up was done to determine whether the improved glucose control persisted and whether such therapy had a long-term effect on macrovascular outcomes. Continued reduction in microvascular risk, and for myocardial infarction and death from any cause, were observed during 10 years of post-UKPDS follow-up.4


1. UK Prospective Diabetes Study Home page
from the Diabetes Trials Unit at the Oxford Centre for Diabetes, Endocrinology and Metabolism, University of Oxford.

2. UKPDS - Implications for the care of people with Type 2 diabetes (Jan 1999)
from the Diabetes UK

3. UK Prospective Diabetes Study
A comprehensive slideshow from the UKPDS about the study.

4. 10-Year Follow-up of Intensive Glucose Control in Type 2 Diabetes
at the New England Journal of Medicine

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Author: William W Quick MD
New March 26, 2012


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This page was new at D-is-for-Diabetes on March 26, 2012

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