Programm                 "Degeneration und Regeneration– Grundlagen, Diagnostik und Therapie"

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Measurement of Retinal Vessel Wall Thickness with Scanning-laser Doppler Flowmetry in Healthy Persons and in Patients with Arterial Hypertension

Pogorelov P., Michelson G., Harazny J., Welzenbach J. 
Department of Ophthalmology, University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, Erlangen

Purpose: Arterial hypertension is one of the most important risk factors for cardio- and cerebrovascular disorders. Epidemiologic data suggest that past declines in stroke-related mortality will not continue, and that stroke incidence may even increase. No panacea for acute stroke treatment is expected in the next decade. Therefore, the best strategy for stroke remains prevention. Retinal vessels, which can be visualized easily and noninvasive, share similar embryological, anatomical and physiological characteristics with the cerebral circulation. The aim of this study was to examine whether wall thickness of retinal vessels gained by scanning laser Doppler flowmetry (SLDF) is associated with arterial hypertension.
Method: 810 retinal arteries and veins in 326 eyes of 326 patients (mean age 51.8 ± 13.7 years) were examined. All scanning-laser doppler flowmetry images derive from Dept. of Ophthalmology of the University of Erlangen, Germany. Vessel wall thickness and other characteristics were estimated using analysis tool of J. Welzenbach.
Results: In all 4 quadrants of the retina, the arterial wall thickness (WT) was significantly increased (19.9 ± 5.5 vs. 14.3 ± 3.8 µm, p <0.001) in patients with than without hypertension. Outer lumen diameter of retinal arteries as well ar

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