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LONDON — Progression vs. control of
diabetic retinopathy is closely related to a number of
factors, many of which are modifiable, a clinician said here.
"Attendance at screening programs and the number of reminders for
attendance were found to be strictly correlated with the grade of retinopathy
in Somerset, U.K. In Gloucestershire, U.K., sight-threatening diabetic
retinopathy was found to be present more frequently in the most deprived
socio-economic groups, who were also the least likely to attend for
screenings," Peter Scanlon, MD, said at the
Additional modifiable risk factors are glycemic index, blood pressure
and lipid control. The impact of smoking is controversial, Dr. Scanlon said.
"There are also psychological aspects that can heavily affect the risk
of advanced diabetic retinopathy. Eating disorders in women with type 1
diabetes can be devastating, as they refuse to stick to the appropriate diet.
Denial of the disease inevitably leads to refusal to treat it. I had a patient
who had not told her partner of 11 years that she had diabetes. Needle phobia
can be a strong impediment to treatment too," he said.
- Disclosures: Dr. Scanlon has no relevant financial disclosures.