The diabetic immigrant: Cardiovascular risk factors and control. contributions of the IDIME study

Josep Franch-Nadal, M. Carmen Martínez-Sierra, Albert Espelt, Enric Sagarra-Busquets, Flor Patitucci-Gómez, Albert Goday-Arno

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12 Citations (Scopus)


Introduction and objectives: The aim of this study was to determine the clinical characteristics of diabetes and associated cardiovascular risk factors in immigrants with diabetes in Spain. Methods: A multicenter, observational, cross-sectional study including a cohort of 605 diabetic immigrants and 307 native diabetics was conducted in patients diagnosed with diabetes and treated in primary and specialized care in Spain. A consecutive sampling method was followed. We studied epidemiological, clinical and laboratory variables related to diabetes and the presence of classical risk factors. Results: The immigrant diabetic patient was younger (50.4 [11.5] vs 62.7 [13] years) and had fewer years of diabetes progression (5.8 [6.4] vs 10.5 [8.3] years) (P<.001) compared with native diabetic patients. Immigrants from South America with diabetes were more obese. No statistically significant differences were found in abdominal obesity or the waist/height ratio. Glycemic control was worse in immigrants than in the native Spaniard group (glycosylated hemoglobin, 7.8 [2.2] vs 7.1 [1.5%]), especially among South Asians (8.1[2.5%]) (P<.001), in whom insulin use was lower (12.8% vs 30.7% in other immigrants) (P<.001). However, the prevalence of chronic complications of diabetes was lower among immigrants, particularly that of macrovascular complications (7.7% vs 24.4%) (P<.01). Conclusions: In our study the profile of immigrant diabetics in Spain is one of a young diabetic without complications, but with worse metabolic control. These findings provide an excellent opportunity to implement preventive measures. © 2012 Sociedad Española de Cardiología. Published by Elsevier España, S.L. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)39-46
JournalRevista Espanola de Cardiologia
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2013


  • Cardiovascular risk factors
  • Complications
  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Immigration
  • Metabolic control


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