University of Sussex

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Dynamic contrast enhanced MRI in patients with diabetic macular edema: initial results

journal contribution
posted on 2023-06-07, 13:51 authored by G. L. Trick, J. Liggett, J. Levy, I. Adamsons, P. Edwards, U. Desai, P. S. Tofts, B. A. Berkowitz
To assess the ability of dynamic contrast enhanced magnetic resonance imaging (DCE-MRI) to detect blood retinal barrier (BRB) damage in patients with diabetic macular edema (DME). DCE-MRI with 0.1 mmol Gd-DTPA was used to measure BRB permeability in 10 healthy and visually normal subjects and eight patients with DME, including five patients with non-clinically significant (NCS) DME and three patients with clinically significant (CS) DME. For each subject, the enhancement of the MRI signal intensity in the pre-macular vitreous was measured as a function of time following contrast injection. A linear regression analysis was performed on each subject and the slopes of the contrast enhancement functions were compared. The DCE-MRI procedure was well tolerated by all 18 subjects. However, in four subjects, excessive eye movements resulted in spurious results. Consequently, 78% (14/18) of the subjects provided usable data. The mean slope of the control group was not significantly (p>0.05) different from zero (i.e. signal intensity in the pre-macular vitreous space was constant as a function of time post-contrast injection). For the diabetic patients, the average slope of the contrast enhancement function was significantly greater than in the control group (p<0.01). Furthermore, for both diabetic sub-groups, the average slopes were greater (p<0.05) than that for the control group but not significantly (p>0.05) different from each other. This 'proof of concept' study demonstrated that DCE-MRI detects passive leakage through the BRB in diabetic patients with either NCS or CS macular edema. In future studies, DCE-MRI may be useful for early quantitative evaluation of drug treatment effects in patients with DME.


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  • Published


Experimental Eye Research









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Department affiliated with

  • BSMS Publications

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