The metabolic syndrome using the National Cholesterol Education Program and International Diabetes Federation definitions among urbanised black South Africans with established coronary artery disease
Background. The International Diabetes Federation (IDF) introduced a new definition of the metabolic
syndrome (MS) that emphasises ethnic-specific cut-offs for waist circumference (WC).
Objective. To compare MS prevalence rates using the National Cholesterol Education Program Adult
Treatment Panel III (NCEP: ATP III) and IDF definitions.
Methods. Anthropometric data, fasting biochemical variables and MS prevalence rates were measured in 40
black patients with established coronary artery disease (CAD). Glucose metabolism was assessed using the
oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT), and insulin-mediated glucose disposal (M-value) was evaluated using the
hyperinsulinaemic euglycaemic clamp technique.
Results. Based on the NCEP: ATP III definition, MS prevalence was 60% and using the IDF definition, it was
57.5%. The two definitions similarly classified ~83% of patients as being MS positive or MS negative. Lower
WC cut-offs in the IDF definition classified greater numbers of men and women as having WC as a risk factor
– IDF v. NCEP: ATP III men 57.6% v. 36.4%; women 100% v. 71.4%. Impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) was found
in 12 of the 40 patients (30%) and diabetes mellitus (DM) in 8 (20%). Mean M-value was reduced in IGT and
DM groups compared with the normal group, significantly so in the DM group (p = 0.01).
Conclusions. NCEP: ATP III and IDF definitions both generated similar MS prevalence estimates. The
two definitions similarly identified the presence or absence of the MS in the majority of patients. The IDF
definition classified greater numbers of men and women as having WC as a risk factor. There was a high
prevalence of previously undiagnosed IGT and DM in our South African black patients with established CAD.
Journal of Endocrinology, Metabolism and Diabetes of South Africa Vol. 12 (1) 2007: pp. 6-12