Purpose: Our purpose was to examine the relationship of retinal vascular parameters with diabetes and retinopathy in an older Asian population. Methods: Retinal photographs from participants of a population-based survey of Asian Malay persons aged 40-80 years were analyzed. Specific retinal vascular parameters (tortuosity, branching angle, fractal dimension, and caliber) were measured using a semiautomated computer-based program. Diabetes was defined as random plasma glucose ≥ 11.1 mmol/liter, the use of diabetes medication, or physician-diagnosed diabetes. Retinopathy signs were graded from photographs using the modified Airlie House classification system. Results: A total of 2735 persons were included in the study. Persons with diabetes (n = 594) were more likely to have straighter (less tortuous) arterioles and wider arteriolar and venular caliber than those without diabetes (n = 2141). Among subjects with diabetes, those with retinopathy had wider venular caliber than those without retinopathy (211.3 versus 204.9 μm, p = .001). Among nondiabetic subjects, however, those with retinopathy had more tortuous venules than those without retinopathy [5.19(×104) versus 4.27(×104), p < .001]. Conclusions: Retinal vascular parameters varied by diabetes and retinopathy status in this older Asian cohort. Our findings suggest that subtle alterations in retinal vascular architecture are influenced by diabetes.

Diabetes, Epidemiology, Imaging, Retinopathy
dx.doi.org/10.1177/193229681200600315, hdl.handle.net/1765/63913
Journal of Diabetes Science and Technology
Department of Ophthalmology

Cheung, C.Y.-L, Lamoureux, E.L, Ikram, M.K, Sasongko, M.B, Ding, J, Zheng, Y, … Wong, T.Y. (2012). Retinal vascular geometry in Asian persons with diabetes and retinopathy. Journal of Diabetes Science and Technology, 6(3), 595–605. doi:10.1177/193229681200600315