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Anshi A. Dattani, Roxanne Crosby-Nwaobi, Sobha Sivaprasad; Ethnic Variations In Retinopathy Rates In Newly Diagnosed Diabetics In The United Kingdom. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2011;52(14):611.
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Diabetic retinopathy is the commonest cause of blindness in the Western world. There has not been any new data on the rate of retinopathy in newly diagnosed diabetics (NDD) since the United Kingdom Prospective Diabetic Study (UKPDS) in 1998. The aim of this study was therefore to assess the rate of retinopathy in NDD in a multiethnic cohort in South East London in the UK and to investigate whether there are any ethnic variations in the rates of diabetic retinopathy.
The rate of retinopathy in NDD (n=360) was recorded from patient databases and analysed according to their ethnic group (Asian, Afro-Caribbean, Caucasian) and age.
Retinopathy was present in 9.9% of NDD. There was no significant difference in the rate of retinopathy in NDD of Asian, Afro-Caribbean or Caucasian background (10%, 11.2%, 8.9% respectively). 1.7% NDD had maculopathy (Asians: 5%, Afro-Caribbeans: 1.2%, Caucasians: 1.6%). There was a significant difference in the mean age of onset of retinopathy in Asians, Afro-Caribbeans and Caucasians (42.8, 51.7, 63.7 years respectively; p=0.000).
Since the UKPDS the rate of retinopathy in NDD has dramatically decreased from 37.2% to 9.9%. This may be due to more regular screening for retinopathy, strict blood pressure management and glycaemic control in NDD. However whilst there was no significant difference in the rate of retinopathy between the ethnic groups, Asians and Afro-Caribbeans are diagnosed with retinopathy at a younger age than Caucasians.
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