Mainstreaming the metabolic syndrome: a definitive definition

Paul Z Zimmet, Jonathan E Shaw and K George M M Alberti
Med J Aust 2005; 183 (4): . || doi: 10.5694/j.1326-5377.2005.tb06987.x
Published online: 15 August 2005

This new definition should assist both researchers and clinicians

The metabolic syndrome — the clustering of abdominal obesity, dyslipidaemia, hyperglycaemia and hypertension — is a major public health challenge worldwide.1,2 The metabolic syndrome is not benign; it is associated with a substantially elevated risk of type 2 diabetes (5-fold) and of cardiovascular disease (CVD) (2–3-fold),1 and its increasing prevalence could possibly reverse the gains made through recent declining CVD mortality.

  • 1 International Diabetes Institute, Caulfield, VIC.
  • 2 Imperial College, London, UK.


  • 1. Eckel RH, Grundy SM, Zimmet PZ. The metabolic syndrome. Lancet 2005; 365: 1415-1428.
  • 2. Cameron AJ, Shaw JE, Zimmet PZ. The metabolic syndrome: prevalence in worldwide populations. Endocrinol Metab Clin N Am 2004; 33: 351-376.
  • 3. Kylin E. Studien über das Hypertonie-Hyperglykämie-Hyperurikämiesyndrom. Zentrabl f innere Med Leipz 1923; 81: 105-127.
  • 4. Vague J. Sexual differentiation. A factor affecting the forms of obesity. Presse Med 1947; 30: 339-340.
  • 5. Alberti KG, Zimmet PZ. Definition, diagnosis and classification of diabetes mellitus and its complications. Part 1: diagnosis and classification of diabetes mellitus provisional report of a WHO consultation. Diabet Med 1998; 15: 539-553.
  • 6. Balkau B, Charles MA. Comment on the provisional report from the WHO consultation. European Group for the Study of Insulin Resistance (EGIR). Diabet Med 1999; 16: 442-443.
  • 7. Expert Panel on Detection, Evaluation, and Treatment of High Blood Cholesterol in Adults. Executive summary of the Third Report of the National Cholesterol Education Program (NCEP) Expert Panel on Detection, Evaluation, and Treatment of High Blood Cholesterol in Adults (Adult Treatment Panel III). JAMA 2001; 285: 2486-2497.
  • 8. International Diabetes Federation. The IDF consensus worldwide definition of the metabolic syndrome. Brussels: IDF, 2005. Available at: (accessed May 2005).
  • 9. Alberti KGMM, Zimmet PZ, Shaw JE. The metabolic syndrome — a new world-wide definition from the International Diabetes Federation consensus. Lancet 2005. In press.
  • 10. WHO Expert Consultation. Appropriate body-mass index for Asian populations and its implications for policy and intervention strategies. Lancet 2004; 363: 157-163.
  • 11. Stern M, Williams K, Gonzalez-Villalpando C, et al. Does the metabolic syndrome improve identification of individuals at risk of type 2 diabetes and/or cardiovascular disease? Diabetes Care 2004; 27: 2676-2681.


remove_circle_outline Delete Author
add_circle_outline Add Author

Do you have any competing interests to declare? *

I/we agree to assign copyright to the Medical Journal of Australia and agree to the Conditions of publication *
I/we agree to the Terms of use of the Medical Journal of Australia *
Email me when people comment on this article

Online responses are no longer available. Please refer to our instructions for authors page for more information.