Cardiovascular risk levels in general practice patients with type 2 diabetes in rural and urban areas

Qing Wan, Mark F. Harris*, Gawaine Powell-Davies, Upali W. Jayasinghe, Jeff Flack, Andrew Georgiou, Roan R. Burns, Danielle L. Penn

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: To investigate the change of cardiovascular risk factor from 2000 to 2002 in general practice patients with type 2 diabetes in urban and rural areas, and the association between cardiovascular risk (both single risk factors and coronary heart disease absolute risk (CHDAR)) and rurality in three years. Methods: In total, 6305 patients were extracted from 16 Divisions (250 practices). Multivariate regression at Division, practice and patient levels was conducted with adjustment for age and gender. Results: In each of the three years, most single individual risk factors and CHDAR were high. Comparing 2002 with 2000: for urban patients in 2002 total cholesterol (OR 0.85) and low-density lipoprotein (OR 0.81) significantly decreased, and high-density lipoprotein (HDL) (OR 1.16) significantly increased; for rural patients in 2002 HbA1c (OR 0.85) significantly decreased and HDL (OR 1.22) significantly increased; and CHDAR significantly improved only in urban patients (OR 0.93) in 2002. In 2002 rural patients were still more likely to be overweight/obese (OR 1.16), be current smokers (OR 1.36), and have worse HDL (OR 0.84) and triglycerides (OR 1.23) than their urban counterparts. Conclusion: Some key individual risk factors and CHDAR did not improve in rural patients with type 2 diabetes despite a number of programs designed to provide comprehensive care to rural patients with diabetes. More emphasis is needed on supporting access to lifestyle changes (such as smoking, diet and physical activity) in rural primary health care.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)327-333
Number of pages7
JournalAustralian Journal of Rural Health
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Cardiovascular risk
  • Rurality
  • Type 2 diabetes


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