HealthDay News — Disorganization of the inner retinal layers (DRIL) is associated with morphological changes in the outer retina and worse levels of diabetic retinopathy in eyes with diabetic macular edema (DME), according to a study published online January 11 in JAMA Ophthalmology.

Radha Das, from Queen’s University in Belfast, U.K., and colleagues examined associations between DR severity, retinal morphology on spectral-domain optical coherence tomography, and visual acuity among 80 individuals with DME (102 eyes; mean age 63 years) seen between December 28, 2013, and April 30, 2014. 

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The researchers found that the odds of having DRIL were greater in eyes with disrupted external limiting membrane (odds ratio [OR], 4.4; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.6 to 12; P=0.003), disrupted ellipsoid zone (OR, 2.7; 95% CI, 1 to 7.2; P=0.03), presence of epiretinal membrane (OR, 2.8; 95% CI, 1 to 7.4; P=0.03), and increase in retinal thickness at the fovea (OR, 1.6; 95% CI, 1.1 to 2.2; P<0.001). In addition, DRIL was more likely in eyes with proliferative DR (OR, 7.3; 95% CI, 1.7 to 31.4; P=0.007). For each 100-μm increase in the average global DRIL, mean visual acuity decreased by approximately 4.7 letters (95% CI, −7.9 to 1.4; P=0.006).

“Further longitudinal studies seem warranted to determine whether DRIL is a clinically relevant noninvasive morphological marker in eyes with DME,” the authors write.

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