Diabetes mellitus as a risk factor for pulmonary complications after coronary bypass surgery

Lauruschkat A.H., Arnrich B., Albert A.A., Walter J.A., Amann B., Rosendahl U.P., Alexander T., Ennker J.

Recent research has pointed to respiratory dysfunction in patients with diabetes. In a study of 8555 patients undergoing coronary bypass operations the reintubation rate was significantly higher in patients with undiagnosed diabetes (4.6%) and those on insulin therapy (4.5%) vs patients without diabetes and those on oral therapy. The proportion of patients who required ventilation for periods longer than 1 day were also significantly higher in the undiagnosed (9.9%) and insulin treated diabetics (8.6%) vs 4.8% for non diabetic patients.

Clinical relevance: It is possible that diabetic patients may benefit from prophylactic respiratory muscle training before surgery although this is still to be proven.

Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery 2008; 135: 1047 – 1053

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