The Beaver Dam Eye Study. Retinopathy in adults with newly discovered and previously diagnosed diabetes mellitus

Ophthalmology. 1992 Jan;99(1):58-62. doi: 10.1016/s0161-6420(92)32011-1.


The prevalence of diabetic retinopathy was examined in people with newly discovered noninsulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM) (n = 50) and in those with previously diagnosed diabetes (n = 395) in a population-based study of people between the ages of 43 and 86 years who lived in Beaver Dam, Wisconsin between 1988 and 1990. Retinopathy was determined from stereoscopic fundus photographs. The prevalence of any retinopathy was 10.2% in those with newly diagnosed NIDDM, none had proliferative retinopathy, and 2.0% had macular edema. These data suggest that asymptomatic people discovered to have NIDDM during epidemiologic studies may not need immediate ophthalmoscopic examination at the time of their diagnosis because they have a relatively low risk of danger of visual loss due to diabetic retinopathy at that time.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / complications
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / diagnosis*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / complications
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / diagnosis*
  • Diabetic Retinopathy / epidemiology*
  • Diabetic Retinopathy / etiology
  • Edema / epidemiology
  • Female
  • Fundus Oculi
  • Humans
  • Macula Lutea
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Photography
  • Prevalence
  • Retinal Diseases / epidemiology
  • Wisconsin / epidemiology