Background: Experimental and clinical studies suggest a possible association between vitamin D deficiency and both diabetic retinopathy and maculopathy.
Methods: We have performed a cross-sectional study in adults with types 1 and 2 diabetes mellitus. The relationship between the presence and severity of diabetic retinopathy and maculopathy with serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D concentration was evaluated using logistic regression analyses in the presence of demographic and clinical covariates.
Results: 657 adults with diabetes were stratified based on retinopathy grading: No Diabetic Retinopathy (39%), Background Diabetic Retinopathy (37%), Preproliferative Diabetic Retinopathy (21%), and Proliferative Diabetic Retinopathy (3%), respectively. There were no differences in serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D concentrations (25(OH)D) between the groups (15.3 ± 9.0 versus 16.4 ± 10.5 versus 15.9 ± 10.4 versus 15.7 ± 8.5 ng/mL, P = NS). Logistic regression analysis demonstrated no statistically significant relationship between the severity of retinopathy and serum 25(OH)D. Furthermore, there was no difference in serum 25(OH)D between those with (n = 94, 14%) and those without (n = 563, 86%) Diabetic Maculopathy (16.2 ± 10.0 versus 15.8 ± 9.8, P = NS) and no relationship was demonstrated by logistic regression analyses between the two variables.
Conclusions: This study has found no association between serum 25(OH)D and the presence and severity of diabetic retinopathy or maculopathy.