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Joana Ferreira, Arnaldo Dias Santos, luisa vieira, Duarte Amado, João Paulo Cunha, Luis Abegão Pinto; DIABETIC RETINOPATHY - NEURODEGENERATIVE DISEASE ?. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2014;55(13):4419.
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The purpose of this study was to evaluate the changes in retinal thickness, particularly in layer ganglion cells, in diabetic patients without diabetic retinopathy, and to investigate the possible relationship between this thickness and duration of diabetes mellitus.
The study included 20 patients (40 eyes) with diabetes mellitus without diabetic retinopathy and 20 subjects (40 eyes) controls. We measured the retinal thickness(RT) in the fovea, parafovea and perifovea (1, 3, 6mm ETDRS), as well as GCL + IPL thickness in 2 and 3 mm ETDRS, with spectral domain optical coherence tomography (SD-OCT).
A significant decrease of RT was found in diabetics eyes versus controls (p<0,05), in superior, inferior and nasal inner quadrant. A significant decrease of GCL + IPL was, also, found in diabetics eyes versus controls in nasal inner and outer quadrant (p < 0,01). Significant correlation was found between duration of diabetes and nasal CGL + IPL thickness.
The results suggest the loss of intraretinal neural tissue in diabetic patients without clinically detectable retinopathy and support the concept that early diabetic retinopathy includes a neurodegenerative component. SD-OCT may be useful tool to diagnose early neurodegenerative changes in diabetic retinopathy.
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