The relationship between serum ascorbic acid (AA) and diabetic macroangiopathy was studied. Fifty-six patients with noninsulin-dependent diabetes mellitus were examined, together with 20 healthy controls matched for age against the diabetes patients. Aortic pulse wave velocity (PWV) was taken as an index of the severity of atherosclerosis. The level of serum AA in diabetic patients was significantly lower than that of the controls. Among the diabetic groups, those with elevated PWV levels by age demonstrated a significant drop in AA. No significant differences were seen in the level of serum dehydroascorbic acid (DHAA) between patients and controls, nor were there any significant differences among patient groups. The concentration of serum AA was inversely related to the risk factors of atherosclerosis, such as body mass index, Apo B/ Apo A-I ratio, thiobarbituric acid-reactive substances (TBARS), and microalbumin in urine. It was inferred from these findings that the depletion of serum AA was apparent in diabetics with advanced atherosclerosis.