Linking the Eyes and the Heart

Retinopathy and Congestive Heart Failure Risk

| Jun 1, 2005

People with retinopathy have a higher rate of congestive heart failure (CHF), even those without preexisting coronary heart disease, diabetes or hypertension.

More than 11,000 participants in a seven-year study in four U.S. communities had retinal photographs taken between 1993 and 1995. The photographs were assessed for the presence of retinopathy. The seven-year incidence of CHF was 5.4 percent.

The presence of retinopathy, a marker of microvascular disease, indicated twice the risk of CHF. In participants without preexisting coronary heart disease, diabetes or hypertension, retinopathy was associated with a tripled risk of CHF.

Microvascular disease may be an important indicator of development of heart failure in the general population.

Journal of the American Medical Association, January 2005

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Categories: Diabetes, Diabetes, Eye Care (Retinopathy), Heart Care & Heart Disease


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Jun 1, 2005

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