Seeing beyond retinopathy in diabetes: electrophysiological and psychophysical abnormalities and alterations in vision

Endocr Rev. 1998 Aug;19(4):462-76. doi: 10.1210/edrv.19.4.0340.


Contrast sensitivity testing, in common with color vision (another test of psychophysical function), demonstrates significant changes in diabetic subjects compared with nondiabetic controls, and there is some evidence for a relationship with grade of retinopathy. Changes in contrast sensitivity have been demonstrated in children and adults with diabetes of short duration, and some evidence exists for a correlation with poor glycemic control, although prospective studies are required to assess this relationship over a longer time period. Although both color vision and contrast sensitivity demonstrate similar patterns, studies that directly compare the two tests suggest that measurement of contrast sensitivity is the more sensitive and specific.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Animals
  • Color Perception
  • Contrast Sensitivity
  • Diabetic Retinopathy / physiopathology*
  • Electrophysiology
  • Electroretinography
  • Humans
  • Vision, Ocular*