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Does peripheral neuropathy invariably accompany nephropathy in type 1 diabetes mellitus?

Research output: Contribution to Journal/MagazineJournal articlepeer-review

  • J. E. Shaw
  • R. Gokal
  • Sally Hollis
  • A. J. M. Boulton
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>01/1998
<mark>Journal</mark>Diabetes Research and Clincal Practice
Issue number1
Number of pages7
Pages (from-to)55-61
Publication StatusPublished
<mark>Original language</mark>English


In patients with Type 1 diabetes mellitus complicated by diabetic nephropathy and retinopathy, it is usually believed that significant neuropathy is almost universal, but few studies have directly addressed this. This study assessed neuropathy in 91 such subjects, using vibration perception thresholds (VPT) and the neuropathy disability score (NDS). A total of 34% of subjects had no neuropathy on age adjusted VPT (z score) and 26% had no neuropathy on NDS. The severity of neuropathy as measured by VPT z score was related to increasing glycated haemoglobin (P=0.02) and male sex (P=0.03), and NDS was independently associated with age (P<0.0001) and HbA1c (P=0.003). These factors together accounted for only 12 and 31% of the total variance in VPT z score and NDS, respectively. In conclusion, the study has shown that a significant proportion of patients with diabetic nephropathy are free of neuropathy, but the full explanation for their protection from neuropathy is unclear.