Niacin Safe for People with Diabetes

Dec 1, 2000

Marshall B. Elam, MD, and a multi-center team at the University of Tennessee, Memphis, are saying patients with type 2 diabetes who receive lipid-modifying doses of niacin show a significant increase in high-density lipoprotein (HDL or "good") cholesterol and a significant decrease in triglycerides and low-density lipoprotein (LDL or "bad") cholesterol levels.

Their results were derived from the Arterial Disease Multiple Intervention Trial, which studied 468 patients with peripheral arterial disease. Of the 468 patients in this trial, 125 had diabetes. The team randomized all patients to receive either niacin at 3000 mg per day, or a placebo. According to the September 13 issue of Journal of the American Medical Association, 64 diabetic patients received niacin, as did 173 nondiabetics.

The researchers note that niacin use significantly increased HDL cholesterol by 29 percent, both in people with diabetes and in those without. In addition, niacin decreased triglycerides in people with and without diabetes by 23 and 28 percent and LDL cholesterol by eight and nine percent, respectively. Subjects with and without diabetes receiving the placebo increased HDL cholesterol by zero and two percent, respectively, and increased triglycerides seven and zero percent. One and one percent, respectively, demonstrated increased levels in LDL cholesterol.

The researchers note glucose levels increased by 8.7 mg/dl in people with diabetes receiving niacin and by 6.3 mg/dl in the nondiabetics receiving niacin.

"Despite current recommendations against use of niacin in diabetes, the present study demonstrates that lipid-modifying doses of immediate-release niacin can be used safely in patients with stable, controlled, type 2 diabetes," wrote Elam and colleagues. "Niacin therapy may be considered as an alternative to statin drugs or fibrates in patients with diabetes in whom these agents are not tolerated, or in whom they fail to sufficiently correct hypertriglyceridemia or low HDL cholesterol."

Click Here To View Or Post Comments

Categories: Diabetes, Diabetes, General, Type 2 Issues


Take the Diabetes Health Pump Survey
See What's Inside
Read this FREE issue now
For healthcare professionals only
  • What's on the Horizon with Diabetes Research and Therapy
See the entire table of contents here!

You can view the current or previous issues of Diabetes Health online, in their entirety, anytime you want.
Click Here To View

See if you qualify for our free healthcare professional magazines. Click here to start your application for Pre-Diabetes Health, Diabetes Health Pharmacist and Diabetes Health Professional.

Learn More About the Professional Subscription

Free Diabetes Health e-Newsletter

Latest
Popular
Top Rated
Print | Email | Share | Comments (0)

You May Also Be Interested In...


Click Here To View Or Post Comments

Dec 1, 2000

©1991-2014 Diabetes Health | Home | Privacy | Press | Advertising | Help | Contact Us | Donate | Sitemap

Diabetes Health Medical Disclaimer

The information on this site is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. All content, including text, graphics, images, and information, contained on or available through this website is for general information purposes only. Opinions expressed here are the opinions of writers, contributors, and commentators, and are not necessarily those of Diabetes Health. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website.