What Kills Patients With Metabolic Syndrome?

Metabolic syndrome is a collection of risk factors that increase the likelihood of developing various conditions, such as cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of mortality in patients with metabolic syndrome, accounting for approximately 75% of deaths. This is primarily due to the increased risk of atherosclerosis development, which leads to the restriction of blood flow to vital organs and can result in serious cardiovascular problems such as heart attacks, strokes, and peripheral artery disease [1][2].

Type 2 diabetes is also a significant contributor to mortality in metabolic syndrome patients, with studies showing that it increases the risk of premature death by two to four times. Diabetes can cause damage to various organs such as the eyes, kidneys, nerves, and blood vessels. This can result in complications such as blindness, kidney failure, neuropathy, and cardiovascular disease [3].

Furthermore, other conditions such as non-alcoholic fatty liver disease and obstructive sleep apnea, both of which are associated with metabolic syndrome, can also increase the risk of mortality in patients [4][5].

Managing the underlying risk factors such as high blood pressure, elevated blood sugar levels, and high cholesterol, through lifestyle modifications and medications, is crucial in reducing the risk of death in metabolic syndrome patients [6].


  1. Grundy, S. M. (2016). Metabolic syndrome update. Trends in cardiovascular medicine, 26(4), 364-373.
  2. Mottillo, S., Filion, K. B., Genest, J., Joseph, L., Pilote, L., Poirier, P., … & Eisenberg, M. J. (2010). The metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular risk a systematic review and meta-analysis. Journal of the American College of Cardiology, 56(14), 1113-1132.
  3. Rawshani, A., Rawshani, A., Franz√©n, S., Sattar, N., Eliasson, B., Svensson, A. M., … & Gudbj√∂rnsdottir, S. (2018). Risk factors, mortality, and cardiovascular outcomes in patients with type 2 diabetes. New England Journal of Medicine, 379(7), 633-644.
  4. Fan, J. G., & Farrell, G. C. (2009). Epidemiology of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease in China. Journal of hepatology, 50(1), 204-210.
  5. West, S. D., Nicoll, D. J., & Stradling, J. R. (2016). Prevalence of obstructive sleep apnoea in men with type 2 diabetes. Thorax, 71(9), 820-825.
  6. Reaven, G. M. (2011). The metabolic syndrome: time to get off the merry-go-round?. Journal of Internal Medicine, 269(2), 127-136.