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Spatial distribution of early red lesions is a risk factor for development of vision-threatening diabetic retinopathy

Ometto, G., Assheton, P., Caliva, F., Chudzik, P., Al-diri, B., Hunter, A. and Bek, T. (2017). Spatial distribution of early red lesions is a risk factor for development of vision-threatening diabetic retinopathy. Diabetologia, 60(12), pp. 2361-2367. doi: 10.1007/s00125-017-4424-y

Abstract

Aims/hypothesis
Diabetic retinopathy is characterised by morphological lesions related to disturbances in retinal blood flow. It has previously been shown that the early development of retinal lesions temporal to the fovea may predict the development of treatment-requiring diabetic maculopathy. The aim of this study was to map accurately the area where lesions could predict progression to vision-threatening retinopathy.

Methods
The predictive value of the location of the earliest red lesions representing haemorrhages and/or microaneurysms was studied by comparing their occurrence in a group of individuals later developing vision-threatening diabetic retinopathy with that in a group matched with respect to diabetes type, age, sex and age of onset of diabetes mellitus who did not develop vision-threatening diabetic retinopathy during a similar observation period.

Results
The probability of progression to vision-threatening diabetic retinopathy was higher in a circular area temporal to the fovea, and the occurrence of the first lesions in this area was predictive of the development of vision-threatening diabetic retinopathy. The calculated peak value showed that the risk of progression was 39.5% higher than the average. There was no significant difference in the early distribution of lesions in participants later developing diabetic maculopathy or proliferative diabetic retinopathy.

Conclusions/interpretation
The location of early red lesions in diabetic retinopathy is predictive of whether or not individuals will later develop vision-threatening diabetic retinopathy. This evidence should be incorporated into risk models used to recommend control intervals in screening programmes for diabetic retinopathy.

Publication Type: Article
Publisher Keywords: Diabetic retinopathy, Haemorrhages, Imaging, Microaneurysms, Retinal lesions, Risk factors
Subjects: R Medicine > RC Internal medicine
Departments: School of Health Sciences > Optometry & Visual Science
URI: http://openaccess.city.ac.uk/id/eprint/20645
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