Purpose: There is abundant scientific evidence on the relationship between retinopathy and cardiovascular disease. However anatomical correlation between the retinal lesions and coronary artery disease has been less studied. Our objective is to evaluate the relationship between the degrees of hypertensive, diabetic and / or atherosclerotic retinopathy and the coronary artery disease.
Methods: Transversal observational study of 50 patients admitted for scheduled coronary angiography (of which coronary anatomy is unknown). We evaluated clinical and laboratory variables, retinoscopy by indirect ophthalmoscopy with slit lamps, and coronary angiography. The degree of retinopathy was ranked using the following classifications: Airly House (diabetic), Keith-Wagener-Barker (hypertensive) and Scheie (atherosclerotic). The SYNTAX score was used to estimate the extent of coronary disease.
Results: Multivariate analysis of the data obtained showed that the presence of grade II hypertensive retinopathy (severe signs of vascular constriction and Gunns' signs in the arteriovenous crossing, concealment of the vein blood column by compression of the sclerotic arteriole in an arteriovenous cross, dilated venules and arteries in "silver thread") clinically relevant increases (OR= 4; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1,05 – 15,21; p = 0,043) the risk of having a SYNTAX score greater than or equal to 1 point and therefore the risk having an angiographically significant coronary heart disease.
Conclusions: Upon confirmation that a high degree of hypertensive retinopathy is associated with a high degree of coronary artery disease, this finding allows us to contemplate there is the possibility of adding the study of the retina to the battery of screening tests for chronic coronary artery disease.