• Vol. 36 No. 4, 259–266
  • 15 April 2007

Cerebral Microangiopathy in Patients with Non-insulin-dependent Diabetes Mellitus



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Introduction: The aim of the study was to evaluate cerebral microangiopathy in type 2 non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM) patients and to establish potentially conducive factors. Materials and Methods: A group of 34 patients with NIDDM and 31 gender- and age-matched normal controls (NC) were assessed by extracranial Doppler ultrasound, in order to evaluate the pulsatility index (PI) and the resistance index (RI) in the internal carotid arteries (ICAs); transcranial Doppler was utilised to assess the same parameters in the middle cerebral arteries (MCAs). All patients underwent screening for favouring factors for cerebral vascular remodelling. Results: Of the 34 NIDDM patients, 21 patients (61.76%) (subgroup A) presented with microangiopathic complications [of these, 19 patients (90.46%) had diabetic nephropathy (DN)] versus 13 NIDDM patients (38.24%) (subgroup B) without complications. In subgroup A, 16 patients (76.19%) had PI >1 and RI >0.7 in the ICAs and MCAs (changes consistent with cerebral microangiopathy) versus 5 patients (35.46%) in subgroup B, and no modifications in NC. Of the 19 patients with DN, 14 patients (73.68 %) had impaired haemodynamic indices. Univariate regression analysis showed the following risk factors for the cerebral haemodynamics changes: fibrinogen (F) (OR = 3.11), C-reactive protein (CRP) (OR = 2.40), duration of DM (OR = 2.40), proteinuria (OR = 1.80), serum creatinine (OR = 1.66). Multivariate regression analysis showed as predictors for impaired haemodynamic indices: duration of DM (HR =1.70), proteinuria (HR = 1.70). The haemodynamic indices in the ICAs correlated with duration of DM (r = 0.87, P <0.0001), F (r = 0.86; P <0.0001), CRP (r = 0.80; P <0.0001); in the MCAs with the duration of DM (r = 0.66, P <0.0001), F (r = 0.38; P <0.0001), CRP (r = 0.88; P <0.0001). Conclusion: Cerebral microangiopathy has a high prevalence in NIDDM patients. These cerebral vascular changes correlate with the duration of DM, parameters of inflammation, and proteinuria.

Cardiovascular complications account for the highest rate of morbidity and mortality in patients with diabetes mellitus (DM), type 1 and type 2, respectively. The Copenhagen City Heart Study, carried out in 13,105 subjects followed up prospectively for 20 years, reported that in patients with type 2 DM, the risk of having an incident myocardial infarction or stroke is increased two- to three-fold and the risk of death is increased two-fold, independent of other known risk factors for cardiovascular disease.1

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