Vitamin D and Diabetic Neuropathy

  • Uazman Alam

    Student thesis: Phd


    The accurate assessment of human diabetic somatic polyneuropathy (DSPN) is important to define at risk patients, predict deterioration, and assess the efficacy of pathogenetic treatments. Corneal confocal microscopy (CCM) has been proposed as a surrogate endpoint for DSPN. Approximately 50% of patients with DSPN experience neuropathic pain or symptoms and the underlying reasons are not clearly elucidated. Vitamin D deficiency has been associated with diabetic complications including DSPN and diabetic retinopathy (DR). However there is a paucity of data regarding the interaction of vitamin D status with diabetic complications. This thesis shows that CCM can readily detect small fibre neuropathy prior to large fibre involvement and assess rapidly progressive nerve fibre loss prior to conventional thermal threshold testing. CCM has a superior diagnostic capabilities compared to intra-epidermal nerve fibres and correlates better with nerve conduction studies. Patients with LADA have a greater prevalence of small fibre neuropathy compared to matched patients with type 2 diabetes. Vitamin D deficiency is highly prevalent in patients with diabetes and despite relatively aggressive replacement regimens are inadequate in raising vitamin D levels in a significant proportion of patients. Vitamin D deficiency is not associated with DR but there is a strong association between painful DSPN and vitamin D insufficiency and more so with overt deficiency.  
    Date of Award1 Aug 2014
    Original languageEnglish
    Awarding Institution
    • The University of Manchester
    SupervisorRayaz Malik (Supervisor) & Maria Jeziorska (Supervisor)


    • Vitamin D
    • Diabetic Neuropathy
    • Painful Diabetic Neuropathy
    • Diabetic Retinopathy

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