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Vision-Related Quality of Life in Patients with Diabetic Macular Edema
  1. Seenu M. Hariprasad (retina{at},
  2. Loren Miller (ljmiller{at},
  3. William Mieler (wmieler{at},
  4. Michael Grassi (mgrassi{at},
  5. James L. Green (jlgreen{at},
  6. Rama D. Jager (rdjager{at}
  1. University of Chicago, United States
  2. University of Chicago, United States
  3. University of Chicago, United States
  4. University of Chicago, United States
  5. University of Chicago, United States
  6. University of Chicago, United States


    Purpose:To determine the impact of diabetic macular edema on the quality of life (QOL) in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus.

    Design:Prospective, consecutive, noncomparative case series.

    Methods:An observational study evaluated the quality of vision and vision-specific QOL using the 25-item National Eye Institute Visual Function Questionnaire (NEI VFQ-25). Mean VFQ-25 subscale scores in type 2 diabetic study patients were compared to mean VFQ-25 subscale score in groups of patients with Type 1 Diabetic Retinopathy (T1DR) and varying degrees of age-related macular degeneration (ARMD), glaucoma, cataracts, and reference populations.

    Results:Thirty-three patients completed the NEI VFQ-25. The mean age of the study population was 64 years. When performing a comparison of those patients with DME versus those with isolated T1DR we found that for the general health subscale, the DME versus T1DR group means were 42 ± 4.4 versus 61 ± 1.0 respectively. The DME versus T1DR quality of vision categorical mean scores were 69 ± 4.1 versus 93 ± 3.9. The DME versus T1DR VR-QOL categorical mean scores were 62 ± 5.0 versus 93 ± 1.0. The DME group was significantly worse in each of these three categories compared to the T1DR group (p<0.01). An additional analysis was performed to examine the differences in VR-QOL in the DME group versus varying common ocular diseases including Age-Related Macular Degeneration (ARMD), Glaucoma, Cataracts, and a disease free reference group. The DME group’s VFQ-25 subscale means were significantly lower then the Glaucoma group in 10 out of 12 subscales, the Cataract group in 11 out of 12 subscales, and the Reference group in 12 out of 12 subscales. However, the DME group VFQ-25 subscale means were only significantly different from the ARMD group in 3 out of 12 subscales.

    Conclusions:Type 2 diabetic patients with macular edema experience a decreased VR-QOL comparable to type 1 diabetic patients with diabetic retinopathy, patients with glaucoma, and patients with cataracts. However, VR-QOL of type 2 diabetic patients with macular edema is similar to those individuals with ARMD.

    • Diabetic Macular Edema
    • Diabetic Retinopathy
    • VFQ-25
    • Vision Related Quality of Life

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