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Alessandro Rabiolo, Federico Corvi, Davide Monteduro, Lucia Benatti, Giuseppe Querques, Francesco Bandello; Impact of oral contranceptive pill (OCP) on vessels functionality. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2016;57(12):3751.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
To evaluate the dynamic and static retinal vascular functionality in young females using contranceptive pill (OCP).
Thirty-eight young female were enrolled in this study between January 2015 and November 2015. Patients were divided in two subgroups: OCP group, defined as OCP use for ≥ 6 months; and control group, defined as no current and prior OCP use. The retinal vascular response to flicker light stimulation was evaluated using the Dynamic Vessel Analyzer (DVA, IMEDOS, Jena, Germany). Relative dilatations and constrictions of selected arteriole and venule to a flicker stimulation were measured automatically. Three consecutive measurement cycles were averaged. Static analysis of retinal vessels was also performed.
Thirty-eight eyes of 38 subjects (all female, mean age 24.79 ± 1.8 years) were included in the analysis. Seventeen subjects continuously took OCP for 54.6 ± 29.3 months, while 21 subjects belonged to control group. No difference was found between the OCP and control groups for age (25.2 ± 2.0 years and 24.4 ± 1.5 years, p = 0.166), smoking status (4/17 and 3/21, p = 0.678), systolic (113.4 ± 8.9 and 110.0 ± 7.5, p = 0.399) and diastolic (71.7 ± 8.5 and 65.9 ± 6.9, p = 0.137) blood pressure. With regards to dynamic analysis, women taking OCP exhibited a marked significant vasoconstriction following flicker stimulation in comparison to control group (-2.43 ± 2.5 vs 0.63 ± 2.1, respectively; p = 0.0002). No significant difference was observed between OCP and control groups for both mean arterial (3.76 ± 2.3 vs 2.83 ± 2.6, respectively; p = 0.2580) and venous dilatations (4.15 ± 2.9 vs 3.34 ± 2.3, respectively; p = 0.3438). The static analysis revealed no difference between OCP and control groups for Artero-Venous Ratio (AVR 0.81 ± 0.09 vs 0.86 ± 0.11, respectively; p = 0.097), Central Retinal Artery Equivalent (CRAE 177.7 ± 24.8 vs 183.7 ± 23.2, respectively; p = 0.4486) and Central Retinal Venous Equivalent (CRVE 220.6 ± 31.8 vs 214.9 ± 28.1, respectively; p = 0.5603).
Our data indicate that OCP may affect vessel reactivity to flicker light, particularly increased arteries constriction. This may reflect systemic changes in vascular functionality in subjects using OCP. Moreover, OCP should be considered as a confounding bias in studies involving DVA.
This is an abstract that was submitted for the 2016 ARVO Annual Meeting, held in Seattle, Wash., May 1-5, 2016.
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