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28.09.2018 – 10:01

Novo Nordisk A/S

International Diabetes Federation (IDF) Global Survey Reveals 2 in 3 People With Type 2 Diabetes Have Cardiovascular Disease Risk Factors and/or Have Experienced a Cardiovascular Event

Bagsværd, Denmark (ots/PRNewswire)

- Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading cause of disability and
  death in people with type 2 diabetes[1]
- Despite the high incidence, 1 in 4 people with type 2 diabetes have
  never discussed, or cannot recall discussing, CVD risk factors with
  a doctor[2]
- First-ever global IDF survey investigating CVD awareness among 
  people with type 2 diabetes received more than 12,000 responses in 
  over 130 countries[2] 

To mark World Heart Day on 29 September, the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) in partnership with Novo Nordisk is announcing results from the Taking Diabetes to Heart survey. The global survey investigated cardiovascular disease (CVD) awareness among 12,695 people with type 2 diabetes and revealed that 2 in 3 had CVD risk factors such as high blood pressure, uncontrolled blood glucose levels and high cholesterol and/or had experienced a CVD event such as angina, heart attack, stroke or heart failure. However, 1 in 4 respondents had never discussed, or cannot remember discussing, CVD risk factors with a doctor and only 1 in 4 considered themselves to be at low risk of CVD.[2]

Commenting on the findings, IDF President Professor Nam H. Cho said: "These survey findings confirm our concerns about the increasing global prevalence of diabetes and its associated complications. Awareness of the risks and consequences of the disease remains pitifully low and education to address diabetes complications is lacking. We urge governments to invest in measures to detect type 2 diabetes early and ensure that health professionals are trained to guide people to make positive changes to their lifestyle and better manage their diabetes. This will help people to avoid disabling and life-threating diabetes complications."

Diabetes currently affects 425 million adults worldwide,[3] with most cases being type 2 diabetes. CVD, which includes stroke, coronary heart disease and peripheral artery disease,[4] is the leading cause of disability and death in people with type 2 diabetes.[1]

In the Taking Diabetes to Heart survey, 3 in 4 people with type 2 diabetes said they relied on information about CVD from their doctor. More than half of respondents said they needed more information about the risk factors associated with the development of CVD to better understand the risks in order to help prevent them.[2]

"Cardiovascular disease can have a devastating impact on the lives of people with type 2 diabetes and their families," said Professor Stephen Gough, global chief medical officer of Novo Nordisk. "The IDF survey findings are striking and reinforce the importance of raising awareness of CVD risk and its impact on people living with type 2 diabetes. We are committed to continue working with IDF while utilising these global findings to inform future efforts that can help improve health outcomes."

Taking Diabetes to Heart will culminate in a comprehensive report with regional and country-specific results and resources to help support knowledge and awareness of CVD among people with type 2 diabetes and those at risk around the world.

For more information about Taking Diabetes to Heart, visit

For more information about diabetes and cardiovascular disease, visit

About Taking Diabetes to Heart

Taking Diabetes to Heart - - is the first ever multi-country, online survey investigating the level of cardiovascular disease awareness and knowledge among people with type 2 diabetes. Respondents from over 130 countries participated around the world, with more than 12,000 responses received. The survey is now closed. Results from the survey will be used to inform policy and decision-making around this common and serious complication of diabetes.[3]

About the International Diabetes Federation

The International Diabetes Federation (IDF) is an umbrella organisation of over 240 national diabetes associations in 168 countries and territories. It represents the interests of the growing number of people with diabetes and those at risk. The Federation has been leading the global diabetes community since 1950. The Federation's activities aim to influence policy, increase public awareness and encourage health improvement, promote the exchange of high-quality information about diabetes, and provide education for people with diabetes and their healthcare providers.

About Novo Nordisk

Novo Nordisk is a global healthcare company with 95 years of innovation and leadership in diabetes care. This heritage has given us experience and capabilities that also enable us to help people defeat obesity, haemophilia, growth disorders and other serious chronic diseases. Headquartered in Denmark, Novo Nordisk employs approximately 43,100 people in 79 countries and markets its products in more than 170 countries. For more information, visit, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube.

Further information


Katrine Sperling, +45-4442-6718,


Peter Hugreffe Ankersen, +45-3075-9085,

Anders Mikkelsen, +45-3079-4461,

Valdemar Borum Svarrer, +45-3079-0301, 


1. Low Wang CC, Hess CN, Hiatt WR, et al. Clinical Update: 
   Cardiovascular Disease in Diabetes Mellitus: Atherosclerotic 
   Cardiovascular Disease and Heart Failure in Type 2 Diabetes 
   Mellitus - Mechanisms, Management, and Clinical Considerations. 
   Circulation. 2016;133:2459-2502.
2. International Diabetes Federation. Taking Diabetes to Heart Survey
   Results. Available at:
   vention/cardiovascular-disease/taking-diabetes-to-heart.html. Last
   accessed: September 2018.
3. International Diabetes Federation. IDF Diabetes Atlas. 8th 
   edition. Brussels, Belgium. 2017. Available at: Last accessed: September 2018.
4. International Diabetes Federation. Diabetes and Cardiovascular 
   Disease. 2016. Available at: Last accessed: 
   September 2018. 

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