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BP Drugs, Retinal Vessel Diameter in Diabetes Studied

Diameter in normotensive persons with type 1 diabetes unaffected by ACEIs, ARBs

THURSDAY, Feb. 11 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with type 1 diabetes mellitus who have normal blood pressure, neither angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors nor angiotensin-receptor blockers have an effect on retinal arteriole or venule diameter, according to a study in the February issue of the Archives of Ophthalmology.

Ronald Klein, M.D., of the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health in Madison, and colleagues conducted a study of 147 type 1 diabetes patients, of whom 124 were followed up for five years. The researchers assessed the patients' clinic and 24-hour ambulatory blood pressure and also took gradable fundus photographs at the start and end of the study.

The researchers combined individual arteriole and venule measurements to create indices for average retinal arteriole and venule diameter, and found that there was no association between use of losartan potassium or enalapril maleate and changes in either index.

"In summary, use of angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors or angiotensin-receptor blockers, despite their beneficial effect in reducing the progression of diabetic retinopathy, were not statistically significantly associated with changes in retinal blood vessel caliber in younger, normotensive, normoalbuminuric patients with type 1 diabetes mellitus," the authors write.

The study was partially funded by Merck & Co. Several of the authors reported financial relationships with the pharmaceutical industry, including Merck.

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