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Philipp Raum, Tunde Peto, Norbert Pfeiffer, Philipp Wild, Rene Hoehn, Katharina Ponto, Astrid Schneider, Andreas Schulz, Julia Lamparter, Alireza Mirshahi; Prevalence and cardiovascular risk factors of diabetic retinopathy: results from the Gutenberg Health Study. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2014;55(13):5339.
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Diabetic retinopathy (DR) is the leading cause of blindness in the working-aged people. Up to now, data on the prevalence and the cardiovascular risk factors for DR and diabetic maculopathy (DMac) are missing in Germany.
The Gutenberg Health Study (GHS) is a population-based study with 15,010 participants from the city of Mainz and the district of Mainz-Bingen aged between 35 at 74 years. We determined the weighed prevalence of DR and DMac by assessing fundus photographs of persons with diabetes from the GHS. Furthermore, we analyzed the association of DR with cardiovascular risk factors and diseases.
Overall, 7.5% (1,124/15,010) of the cohort had diabetes. Of these, 27.7% were unaware of their disease and thus newly diagnosed by the GHS. The prevalence of DR and DMac was 21.7% and 2.3%, respectively. Vision-threatening disease was present in 5%. DR was associated with arterial hypertension (Odds Ratio [95% confidence interval]: 1.93 [1.22-3.04]; p=0.0047) and a history of myocardial infarction (1.73 [1.00-2.99]; p=0.05).
Prevalence of DR was slightly lower in the GHS compared to other non-European studies. Our calculation suggests that more than a quarter million persons (257,600) have vision threatening disease in Germany. Arterial hypertension and a history of myocardial infarction are associated with DR.
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