Objective: The aim of this study was to compare patients with schizophrenia to normal individuals as regard retinal micro vascular caliber and to correlate it with disease duration and psychometric sub-scores.
Materials and Methods: Observational analytic case control study included 60 subjects distributed as; Group A: Thirty patients 20-40 years, were recruited consecutively (convenient sample) from the inpatient ward of Kasr Al-Ainy Psychiatry and Addiction Hospital diagnosed to have schizophrenia according to the diagnostic criteria of the 4th edition of Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders-text revised according to Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV (SCID) Axis I Disorders, on medications only. Group B: Thirty subjects who matched the patients group in age, sex and education, with no history of psychiatric disorders or other medical conditions that may affect their retinal vessels (hypertension, diabetes mellitus, and ophthalmological diseases, chronic systemic or autoimmune illnesses). They were recruited from inpatient wards of other departments of Kasr Al Ainy hospitals matched for age and gender with patient group. Ophthalmic examination including: BCVA, slit-lamp examination, fundus examination and retinal fundus photography was done for both patients and controls. Psychometric assessment using PANSS is done for patients group.
Results: The mean diameters of retinal venules and arterioles were wider than that of the control group with statistically significant differences.
Conclusion: Patients with schizophrenia have retinal microvascular abnormalities, specifically wider venular caliber. We suggest future studies with larger sample sizes to assess the use of retinal abnormalities as biomarkers for schizophrenia and to correlate retinal abnormalities with other disease parameters such as cognitive and social functioning in schizophrenia.
Published Date: 2022-05-05; Received Date: 2022-04-04