Differential distribution of manifest lesions in diabetic retinopathy by fundus fluorescein angiography and fundus photography

BMC Ophthalmol. 2020 Dec 1;20(1):471. doi: 10.1186/s12886-020-01740-2.


Background: To analyze the distribution of manifest lesions of diabetic retinopathy (DR) by fundus fluorescein angiography (FFA) and color fundus photography (FP).

Methods: A total of 566 eyes of 324 Chinese patients diagnosed with DR were included in this retrospective study. DR severity was graded by the international grading criterion. The distributions of microaneurysms (MA), intraretinal hemorrhages/exudates (He/Ex), intraretinal microvascular abnormality (IRMA), capillary nonperfusion areas (NPA), and neovascularization (NV) were estimated by multiple logistic regression analyse based on nine-field FFA and FP images.

Results: In mild nonproliferative diabetic retinopathy (NPDR), the highest frequency of MA was found in the posterior pole (67.7%), followed by the inferior nasal (59.4%), and the nasal (55.4%) fields. In moderate NPDR, MA frequently distributed in the posterior pole (98.0%), nasal (97.0%), superior (96.0%), inferior nasal (94.9%), and inferior (92.9%) fields, whereas He/Ex were most prevalent in the posterior pole (69.7%). In severe NPDR and proliferative DR, IRMA, NPA, and NV were more frequent in the nasal field, particularly in the inferior nasal field (60.3, 38.7, and 76.0%, respectively). All lesions were more observed in the combined posterior pole, nasal, and inferior nasal fields than in the posterior pole or combined two fields in the early and severe stages of DR (P < 0.05).

Conclusions: The manifest lesions of DR were common in the nasal field besides the posterior pole in Chinese patients. A combined examination of the posterior pole, nasal, and inferior nasal mid-peripheral retina would help to detect different retinal lesions of DR.

Trial registration: ClinicalTrial. gov, NCT03528720 . Registered 18 May 2018 - Retrospectively registered.

Keywords: Diabetic retinopathy; Distribution; Manifest lesions; Retinal-imaging.

Publication types

  • Clinical Study

MeSH terms

  • Diabetes Mellitus*
  • Diabetic Retinopathy* / diagnosis
  • Fluorescein Angiography
  • Fundus Oculi
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Photography
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Severity of Illness Index

Associated data

  • ClinicalTrials.gov/NCT03528720