Decrease in inner retinal thickness at para-and perifoveal areas before vascular retinopathy in patients with metabolic risk factors

Ko Jo Lin, Mei Xue Loi, Shao Yu Lei, Chao Chun Shiau, Chien-Liang Wu, Jennifer Hui Chun Ho

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Background: Hypertension, dyslipidemia, and hyperglycemia are major risk factors for vascular retinopathy. The relationship between retinal thickness at the macular area and metabolic risk factors, as well as visual impairment, in elderly patients before developing vascular occlusion needs to be investigated. Methods: In this prospective, case-control study, patients >60 years old, without objective visual threatened ocular diseases or systemic abnormalities, except for hypertension, dyslipidemia or/and hyperglycemia, were included for measurement of retinal thickness at the macular area by optical coherence tomography (OCT). Results: Fifty-four patients were analyzed; 11 patients had no metabolic risk factors, 16 had one, 17 had two, and 10 had three. There was no significant difference in age, and full and outer retinal thickness, but there was a significantly lower inner retinal thickness at the parafoveal (p=0.0013) and perifoveal (p=0.018) areas in patients with at least one metabolic risk factor. The superior (p=0.040) and inferior (p=0.046) inner retina at the perifovea and superior (p=0.013) inner retinal thickness at the parafovea were sensitive to metabolic abnormalities. Only patients with three factors had significantly reduced best corrected visual acuity (BCVA). Conclusion: Elderly patients with metabolic risk factors had decreased inner retinal thickness at the para- and perifoveal areas before retinal vascular diseases. Accelerated inner retinal degeneration occurred prior to visual impairment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)108-115
Number of pages8
JournalTaiwan Journal of Ophthalmology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2013



  • Inner retina
  • Macular thickness
  • Metabolic risk factors
  • Parafovea
  • Perifovea

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology

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