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Domenica 15 Giugno 2014 05:36

Islet cell transplantation may have a healing effect for patients with diabetic neuropathy, according to ongoing study data presented at the American Diabetes Association’s 74th Scientific Sessions.

As of November 2013, David M.Thompson, MD, clinical assistant professor and medical director of the Vancouver Islet Transplant Program in Vancouver, British Columbia, and colleagues have followed 44 patients since the study began in January 2002. Thirty patients have been transplanted, according to data. The median follow-up time was 32 months for medical and 55 months for post-islet cell transplantation, with results reported for 6 years of follow-up in each group.

Patients’ nerve conduction velocity, z scores and neuropathy were assessed in all patients in the same laboratory every 12 months.

“We wanted to look at all nerves and get a global assessment of neurological function,” Thompson said.

The nerve conduction velocity included three sensory nerves (median, ulnar, sural) and four motor nerves (median, ulnar, peroneal, and tibial), according to Thompson.

Patients with a z score below –1 were considered to have neuropathy at baseline. They plotted the yearly averages over time and a slope was calculated by simple linear regression, according to data.

“A few patients had no neuropathy (about 15%); most had what would be generally considered mild-to-moderate neuropathy,” he said. “There actually appears to be healing of the islet group; this is statistically significant. This suggests that islet transplant can actually cause nerves to heal rather than slow their rate of decline.” —

 

by Samantha Costa

Disclosure: Thompson reports no relevant financial disclosures.

For more information: Thompson DM. Abstract 79-OR. Presented at: American Diabetes Association’s 74th Scientific Sessions; June 13-17, 2014; San Francisco.

 

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