- Patients with type 2 diabetes (T2D) on lipid-lowering medications appear less likely to develop retinopathy or to require treatment for it.
Why this matters
- Diabetic retinopathy can lead to visual impairment and blindness.
- Retrospective analysis of 265,753 people with T2D from commercial claims data, of whom 37% were on lipid-lowering medications (80% statins, 8% fibrate, 3% combination).
- Funding: Heed Ophthalmic Foundation.
- Compared with 6.5% not taking lipid-lowering drugs, about 6% of patients on lipid-lowering medications had a diagnosis code for nonproliferative diabetic retinopathy, proliferative diabetic retinopathy, or diabetic macular edema or a procedural code for intravitreal injections, pars plana vitrectomy, or laser following diabetes diagnosis (P<.01>
- Patients taking lipid-lowering medications before T2D diagnosis were less likely to:
- Progress to any retinopathy diagnosis: HR, 0.60 (P<.01 and>
- Receive any treatment for retinopathy: HR, 0.8 (P<.01>
- Limited to commercially insured patients.
- Reliance on diagnostic and procedure codes.