Article Text

PDF
Original article
The effect of low-density lipoprotein apheresis on ocular microcirculation in patients with hypercholesterolaemia: a pilot study
  1. Naim Terai1,
  2. Ulrich Julius2,
  3. Michael Haustein1,
  4. Eberhard Spoerl1,
  5. Lutz E Pillunat1
  1. 1Department of Ophthalmology, University Hospital Dresden, Dresden, Germany
  2. 2Department of InternaI Medicine III, University Hospital Dresden, Dresden, Germany
  1. Correspondence to Dr Naim Terai, Department of Ophthalmology, Carl Gustav Carus University Hospital, Fetscherstr. 74, 01307 Dresden, Germany; naim.terai{at}uniklinikum-dresden.de

Abstract

Aim To investigate the effect of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) apheresis on ocular microcirculation in patients with hypercholesterolaemia.

Methods Six patients with hypercholesterolaemia were included in this study. The diameter of retinal vessels was measured continuously with the retinal vessel analyser before and after LDL apheresis. After baseline assessment a monochromatic luminance flicker was applied to evoke retinal vasodilation. Flicker response was then analysed 50, 70 and 120 s after baseline measurement. In addition, cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein, LDL and triglyceride levels were obtained to find a possible correlation between changes in retinal vessel diameter and lipid metabolism before and after apheresis.

Results The mean diameter of the arterioles at baseline was 107.6±2.1 μm and the mean diameter of the venules at baseline was 132.8±3.2 μm. The diameter of the arterioles after apheresis increased to 111.2±2.3 μm after 50 s, 113.2±2.6 μm after 70 s and 113.7±2.6 μm after 120 s, showing a trend to statistical significance at all time points (p=0.046, p=0.028 and p=0.028, respectively). The mean diameter of the venules after apheresis increased to 138.8±5.9 μm after 50 s, 139.8±6.3 μm after 70 s and 141.2±6.0 μm after 120 s, showing a trend to statistical significance at all time points (all p=0.028).

Conclusions Changes in retinal vascular diameter seem to be associated with the systemic effect of a single LDL apheresis. Vasodilatation of the arterioles and the venules improved after LDL apheresis, indicating an improvement of ocular perfusion in patients with hypercholesterolaemia.

  • LDL apheresis
  • retinal vessel analyser (RVA)
  • microcirculation
  • retina
  • physiology
  • pharmacology

Statistics from Altmetric.com

Footnotes

  • Competing interests None.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

  • Ethics approval This study was conducted with the approval of the Ethics Committee Dresden following the Declaration of Helsinki.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

Request permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.