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Parasympathetic denervation of the iris in diabetes mellitus
  1. B. Sigsbee,
  2. R. Torkelson,
  3. G. Kadis,
  4. J. W. Wright,
  5. A. G. Reeves2
  1. Division of Neurology, Department of Medicine, Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, Hanover, New Hampshire, U.S.A.
  2. The Department of Neurology, University of Rochester School of Medicine, Rochester, New York, U.S.A.

    A clinical study


    Sixty-two patients with diabetes mellitus were tested for the presence of parasympathetic denervation hypersensitivity of the iris using a 2% solution of methacholine. Fifty patients (81%) had a measurable miotic response compared with three (8%) of a group of 36 control subjects. An abnormal response was obtained from 17 (74%) of 23 patients with a clinical course of less than two years and 33 (85%) of 39 patients with a clinical course of longer duration. These findings corroborate other evidence of a high incidence of peripheral neuropathy appearing early in the clinical course of diabetes mellitus and extend the observations to the parasympathetic innervation of the iris. The methacholine test is a simple bedside method which is of potential value for establishing parasympathetic iris denervation of diverse aetiologies.

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    A clinical study


    • 2 Reprint requests to: Dr Alexander G. Reeves, Division of Neurology, Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, Hanover, New Hampshire 03755, U.S.A.

    • 1 This study was supported in part by the Hitchcock Foundation and Public Health Service Grant MH25621-01.