Eye Outcomes in Veteran Affairs Diabetes Trial (VADT) After 17 Years

Nasrin Azad, Lily Agrawal, Gideon Bahn, Nicholas V. Emanuele, Peter D. Reaven, Rodney Hayward, Domenic Reda

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE The objective of this study was to assess the long-term role of intensive glycemic control (INT) compared with standard glycemic control in accumulated eye procedures in patients with advanced diabetes. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS We compared the effect of treatment assignment on the accumulated number of eye procedures during the intervention period of the Veteran Affairs Diabetes Trial (VADT) (2000–2008) (median follow-up 5.6 years), the interim VADT follow-up study (2000–2013), and the full 17 years of VADT follow-up (2000–2017). We further analyzed data using various cardiovascular markers in two models. Model I included total cholesterol, HDL cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, triglycerides, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, and BMI. Model II included these covariates plus age and diabetic retinopathy (DR) severity score at baseline of the original trial. RESULTS The final analysis of the data showed a mild but nonsignificant increase in number of procedures and in retinal or retinal plus cataract surgery during the three periods of the study. CONCLUSIONS We found no significant benefit of INT during the original trial period in eye-related procedures, such as various procedures for DR, or during the 17 years of follow-up in cataract surgery. However, after adjusting data for some known vascular markers, the increase in the number of eye procedures with INT becomes more prevalent. This finding indicates that INT might not have a protective role in events requiring surgery in individuals with advanced diabetes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2397-2402
Number of pages6
JournalDiabetes Care
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2021
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Advanced and Specialized Nursing


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