PloS one 2017 03 2312(3) e0174377 doi 10.1371/journal.pone.0174377
To investigate changes in the neural retina according to the presence of retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL) defects in type 2 diabetes, and to determine the association between inner retina thickness and the severity of diabetic complications.
We studied non-glaucomatous patients with type 2 diabetes and control subjects Circumpapillary RNFL and macula ganglion cell-inner plexiform layer (GCIPL) thicknesses were measured by spectral-domain optical coherence tomography. In patients with type 2 diabetes, a cardiovascular autonomic function test (AFT) was performed, which included the heart rate parameter of beat-beat variation-with deep breathing, in response to the Valsalva maneuver, and on postural change from lying to standing. The results of each test were scored as 0 for normal and 1 for abnormal. A total AFT score of 1 was defined as early cardiovascular autonomic neuropathy (CAN), and an AFT score≥ 2 as definite CAN.
We compared control eyes (n = 70), diabetic eyes with RNFL defects (n = 47), and eyes without RNFL defects (n = 30). The average RNFL and GCIPL thicknesses were significantly different among groups (all, P<0.05). On post-hoc testing, diabetic eyes with RNFL defects had a significantly thinner average GCIPL thickness than those without RNFL defects. On multivariate analyses, significantly thinner average GCIPL was seen in early CAN staging (B = -4.32, P = 0.016) and in definite CAN staging (B = -10.33, P<0.001), compared with no CAN involvement, after adjusting for confounding parameters. CONCLUSIONS
Cardiovascular autonomic dysfunction was associated with early neurodegenerative changes in type 2 diabetes.