OBJECTIVE: We analyzed whether any change in capillary density in the retinal circulation could be detected in patients with hypertension in the prediabetic stage.
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS: In a cross-sectional analysis, we assessed capillary density in the foveal (CDF) and parafoveal retinal areas using optical coherence tomography-angiography in 62 patients with hypertension and normal glucose metabolism and 40 patients with hypertension and prediabetes.
RESULTS: The CDF was lower in patients with prediabetes than in those with normal glucose metabolism. Moreover, we found a correlation between CDF and HbA1c and glucose levels for the entire cohort. In patients with HbA1c <6.5% (48 mmol/mol), CDF was lower in patients with HOMA for insulin resistance (HOMA-IR) ≥2.5 than in patients with HOMA-IR <2.5.
CONCLUSIONS: Patients with hypertension and prediabetes display retinal capillary changes, and an association with markers of glucose metabolism exists, even within a nondiabetic HbA1c range.