Diabetes, Heart and Cardiovascular Diseases News Chronicle.  Diabetes, Cardiovascular and Heart Diseases
 Article 181
    Published on May 8, 2017

New Study Suggests Fewer Eye Screenings For Low Risk Of Diabetic Retinopathy Patients

Current treatment guidelines for patients with type 1 diabetes (T1D) suggests annual eye examination as they are at risk for the development of a diabetic retinopathy disease which causes blindness. A new study done by researchers says current guidelines asking all type 1 diabetes (T1D) patients to undergo eye screening is costly and ineffective. They call for fewer eye screenings over a period of time for low-risk patients and more eye screenings over a period of time for high-risk patients. Diabetic retinopathy causes irreparable damages to the eye and eye screening catches diabetic retinopathy disease before it starts. But the risk of the development of diabetic retinopathy is not the same in all the diabetes patients.

In the current study, the researchers focused on 1,400 patients with type 1 diabetes, aged between 13 to 39 years for over a period of 30 years. The study includes patients retinal photographs, advanced retinopathy status, vision and diabetes history. The study recommends

  • Diabetes patients with average blood sugar levels of 6 percent with no signs of diabetic retinopathy can undergo one eye screening for every four years
  • Diabetes patients with mild retinopathy can undergo one eye screening for every three years
  • Diabetes patients with moderate to severe diabetic retinopathy should undergo eye screening for every three to six months
  • Diabetes patients with 8 to 10 percent blood sugar levels need more eye screenings

Author of the study is Dr. David Nathan, Director, the Diabetes Center and Clinical Research Center, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston and the study findings were published April 20, 2017, in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Weekly Physical Activity Reduces Heart Risk Associated With Obesity

A study done by researchers at Johns Hopkins University shows exercise may lower heart damage risk in obese people even though they are at higher risk of cardiac problems compared with slimmer people. High-sensitivity cardiac troponin T (hs-cTnT) protein is a heart health biomarker. Future heart failure events will be indicated with the increasing levels of hs-cTnT protein. To find out how weight and exercise influences levels of high-sensitivity cardiac troponin T (hs-cTnT), researchers examined data of 9,427 middle-aged individuals without cardiovascular disease and conducted follow up studies for 15 years. The researchers found that

  • 7.2 percent of the participants had enhanced levels hs-cTnT protein
  • Obese individuals following sedentary lifestyle were 2.5 times more likely to have high levels of hs-cTnT protein when compared with non-obese individuals who perform weekly exercise*
  • An obese individual who perform weekly exercise* were 68 percent more likely to have enhanced levels of hs-cTnT protein when compared with a non-obese individual who performs weekly exercise*

* American Heart Association recommends at least 150 minutes moderate exercise or 75 minutes vigorous exercise per week.

Study results clearly show damage to heart associated with obesity can be reduced by some extent with weekly exercise*. Researchers could not able to find out how physical exercise reduces levels of hs-cTnT protein. But they say the reduction in the levels of hs-cTnT protein may be due to the reduction in cholesterol, blood pressure and improvement in other health metabolic abnormalities associated with obesity. Lead author of the study is Dr. Roberta Florido, a researcher at the Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore and the study findings were published in the American College of Cardiology: Heart Failure.

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