The electrophysiological findings of subclinical neuropathy in patients with recently diagnosed type 1 diabetes mellitus
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To assess the prevalence of subclinical neuropathy within the first year of type I diabetes mellitus, 30 patients and 14 healthy subjects have been studied prospectively. The patients whose diabetes duration was longer than 1 year have been excluded from the study. Control group consisted of healthy volunteers. Subjective neuropathy symptoms, neurological examination, and electrophysiological findings were evaluated. All patients were clinically asymptomatic. At least two abnormal independent neurophysiological nerve parameters, which were required as the criterion of the peripheral nervous system subclinical involvement, were found as in 96.6% of diabetic patients in the first years. The percentages of abnormal electrophysiological parameters in different motor and sensory nerves were 86.7% in sural nerve, 83.3% in peroneal motor nerve, 73.3% in posterior tibial motor nerve, 66.7% in median motor nerve, 63.3% in ulnar motor nerve, 60% in median sensory nerve, and 46.7% in ulnar sensory nerve. While distal motor latency, F conduction time, and minimum F latency were the most frequent abnormal parameters in the upper extremity electrophysiological study; conduction velocity, minimum and mean F latencies, F conduction time were the most frequent abnormal parameters in the lower extremity. In all sensory nerve conduction studies, the most frequent abnormal parameter was the onset latency. In the autonomic sympathetic nerve clectrophysiological study, plantar SSR latency was found significantly longer than the control group. In the lower extremity generally somatic motor fibres, sensory large fibres and sympathetic autonomic nerve fibres were found to be more affected. There is a correlation between HbAlc levels and nerve conduction velocity in posterior fibial and peroneal nerves. However, upper extremity nerve conduction dysfunction was not correlated with HbAlc value. Neither the duration of disease nor the age of the subject correlated with the nerve dysfunction. (C) 2004 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.