Prevention of cardiovascular diseases and diabetes: importance of a screening program for the early detection of risk conditions in a target population


Screening, Prevention, Cardiovascular diseases, Diabetes.


Introduction. Cardiovascular diseases and diabetes are one of the main causes of morbidity and mortality worldwide. In their genesis, an important role is played by some behavioral risk factors that may act inducing the onset of “intermediate risks factors” represented by hypertension, prediabetes, overweight and obesity. This study aimed to show the importance of the screening methodology to early detect these risk conditions in order to reduce the burden of cardiovascular diseases and diabetes complications.

Methods. We carried out a screening program involving a cohort of people aged 45-60 in which risk factors for cardiovascular diseases and diabetes were evaluated. The subjects were then classified in four groups according to the risk conditions.

Results. A high percentage (27.0%) of the sample resulted with some alteration in the detected anthropometric and/or clinical-laboratory parameters but unaware of this condition and, consequently, not under therapeutic treatment.

Conclusions. The screening program allowed the early detection of hypertension and prediabetes or full-blown diabetes conditions in subjects that unknown their pathological condition, and consequently to proceed with adequate investigations and start healthy lifestyles/pharmacological therapies. Overall, the results highlight the need to anticipate these screening campaigns, especially in men, to increase the effectiveness of the prevention programs.


[1] Center for Disease Control and Prevention. About Chronic Diseases. Available at: Accessed on 26/062021.
[2] Global Burden Disease (GBD). 2016 Causes of Death Collaborators. Global, regional, and national age-sex specific mortality for 264 causes of death, 1980-2016: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2016. Lancet 2017;390(10100):1151-210. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(17)32152-9.
[3] World Health Organization. Cardiovascular diseases. Available at: Accessed on 10/07/2021.
[4] Epicentro. Malattie Cardiovascolari. Informazioni generali. Available at: Accessed on 01/08/2021.
[5] World Health Organization. Diabetes. Available at: Accessed on 04/08/2021.
[6] Carter S, Hartman Y, Holder S, Thijssen DH, Hopkins ND. Sedentary Behavior and Cardiovascular Disease Risk: Mediating Mechanisms. Exerc Sport Sci Rev 2017;45(2):80-6. doi: 10.1249/JES.0000000000000106.
[7] Lee W, Hwang SH, Choi H, Kim H. The association between smoking or passive smoking and cardiovascular diseases using a Bayesian hierarchical model: based on the 2008-2013 Korea Community Health Survey. Epidemiol Health 2017;39:e2017026. doi: 10.4178/epih.e2017026.
[8] Mukamal K, Lazo M. Alcohol and cardiovascular disease. BMJ 2017;356;j1340. doi: 10.1136/bmj.j1340.
[9] Rocha NP, Milagres LC, Longo GZ, Ribeiro AQ, Novaes JF. Association between dietary pattern and cardiometabolic risk in children and adolescents: a systematic review. J Pediatr (Rio J) 2017;93(3):214-22. doi: 10.1016/j.jped.2017.01.002.
[10] Goel S, Sharma A, Garg, A. Effect of Alcohol Consumption on Cardiovascular Health. Curr Cardiol Rep 2018;20(4):19. doi: 10.1007/s11886-018-0962-2.
[11] Visalli G, Facciolà A, Bertuccio MP, Picerno I, Di Pietro A. In vitro assessment of the indirect antioxidant activity of Sulforaphane in redox imbalance vanadium-induced. Nat Prod Res 2017;31(22):2612-20. doi: 10.1080/14786419.2017.1286485.
[12] Visalli G, Ferlazzo N, Facciolà A, Picerno I, Navarra M, Di Pietro A. Ex vivo evaluation of the effects of a white grape juice extract on lymphocytic mitochondrial functions. Nat Prod Res 2020;34(4):580-4. doi: 10.1080/14786419.2018.1490906.
[13] Visalli G, Facciolà A, Laganà P, Di Pietro A. Food chemoprevention and air pollution: the health comes with eating. Rev Environ Health 2020;35(4):471-9. doi: 10.1515/reveh-2019-0072.
[14] Laganà P, Anastasi G, Marano F, Piccione S, Singla RK, Dubey AK, Delia S, Coniglio MA, Facciolà A, Di Pietro A, Haddad MA, Al-Hiary M, Caruso G. Phenolic Substances in Foods: Health Effects as Anti-Inflammatory and Antimicrobial Agents. J AOAC Int 2019;102(5):1378-87. doi: 10.5740/jaoacint.19-0131.
[15] Suissa K, Larivière J, Eisenberg MJ, Eberg M, Gore GC, Grad R, Joseph L, Reynier PM, Filion KB. Efficacy and Safety of Smoking Cessation Interventions in Patients with Cardiovascular Disease: A Network Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials. Circ Cardiovasc Qual Outcomes 2017;10(1):pii:e002458. doi: 10.1161/CIRCOUTCOMES.115.002458.
[16] Masana L, Ros E, Sudano I, Angoulvant D; lifestyle expert working group. Is there a role for lifestyle changes in cardiovascular prevention? What, when and how? Atheroscler Suppl 2017;26:2-15. doi: 10.1016/S1567-5688(17)30020-X.
[17] Colpani V, Baena CP, Jaspers L, van Dijk GM, Farajzadegan Z, Dhana K, Tielemans MJ, Voortman T, Freak-Poli R, Veloso GGV, Chowdhury R, Kavousi M, Muka T, Franco OH. Lifestyle factors, cardiovascular disease and all-cause mortality in middle-aged and elderly women: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Eur J Epidemiol 2018;33(9):831-45. doi: 10.1007/s10654-018-0374-z.
[18] Lackland DT. Early-Life Detection of Hypertension Risks: Implications for Clinical Practice and Research. Hypertension 2017;70(3):486-7. doi: 10.1161/HYPERTENSIONAHA.117.09529.
[19] Epicentro. La Sorveglianza PASSI. Informazioni generali. Available at: Accessed on 30/06/2021.
[20] American Heart Association (AHA). 2017 Guidelines for the prevention, detection, evaluation, and management of high blood pressure in adults. Available at: Accessed on 02/07/2021.
[21] Istituto Nazionale di Statistica. Consumo di alcol in Italia. Available from: Accessed on 30/07/2021.
[22] van der Sande MA, Walraven GE, Milligan PG, Banya WA, Ceesay SM, Nyan OA, McAdam KP. Family history: an opportunity for early interventions and improved control of hypertension, obesity and diabetes. Bull World Health Organ 2001;79(4):321-8.
[23] Khera AV, Emdin CA, Drake I, Natarajan P, Bick AG, Cook NR, Chasman DI, Baber U, Mehran R, Rader DJ, Fuster V, Boerwinkle E, Melander O, Orho-Melander M, Ridker PM, Kathiresan S. Genetic Risk, Adherence to a Healthy Lifestyle, and Coronary Disease. N Engl J Med 2016;375(24):2349-58. doi: 10.1056/NEJMoa1605086.
[24] Facciolà A, Visalli G, Orlando A, Bertuccio MP, Spataro P, Squeri R, Picerno I, Di Pietro A. Vaccine hesitancy: An overview on parents' opinions about vaccination and possible reasons of vaccine refusal. J Public Health Res 2019;8(1):1436. doi: 10.4081/jphr.2019.1436.
[25] Visalli G, Cosenza B, Mazzù F, Bertuccio MP, Spataro P, Pellicanò GF, DI Pietro A, Picerno I, Facciolà A. Knowledge of sexually transmitted infections and risky behaviours: a survey among high school and university students. J Prev Med Hyg 2019;60(2):E84-E92. doi: 10.15167/2421-4248/jpmh2019.60.2.1079.
[26] Visalli G, Facciolà A, Nucera S, Picerno I, Di Pietro A. Health education intervention to improve HPV knowledge in sexually active young people. Euromed Biomed J 2019;14(29):125-9.