Advertisement
Feature Article

The practical value of the metabolic syndrome

Namson S Lau, Nicholas R Fuller, Ian D Caterson

Figures

Abstract

The presence of the metabolic syndrome can be a useful tool to help GPs identify patients at higher risk for cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes. To help reduce such risks, patients with the metabolic syndrome should be targeted with interventions following a multifaceted approach.

Key Points

  • The metabolic syndrome represents a link between abdominal obesity, a clustering of the major individual cardiovascular and metabolic risk factors and an increased risk of cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes.
  • GPs should regularly screen the metabolic profile of all adult patients; patients who are older and at higher risk should be screened bi-yearly.
  • The presence of one cardiovascular risk factor should lead to a careful assessment of the patient for the presence of the other cardiovascular and metabolic risk factors that characterise the metabolic syndrome.
  • Patients with the metabolic syndrome should be carefully assessed for related comorbidities.
  • Treatment should follow a multidisciplinary approach, addressing the common underlying cause (excess weight) and intensively targeting individual risk factors.
  • Successful weight loss and regular physical activity can help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes in patients with the metabolic syndrome.

Figures