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Year : 2012  |  Volume : 16  |  Issue : 5  |  Page : 749-753

Prevalence of cardiac autonomic neuropathy in Asian Indian patients with fibrocalculous pancreatic diabetes

1 Department of Endocrinology, Christian Medical College and Hospital, Vellore, India
2 Department of Gastroenterology, Christian Medical College and Hospital, Vellore, India

Correspondence Address:
Nihal Thomas
Department of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism, Christian Medical College Hospital, Vellore - 632004
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2230-8210.100668

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Background: It was formerly believed that since fibrocalculous pancreatic diabetes (FCPD) is a secondary form of diabetes, specific diabetic complications were uncommon. This is no longer considered to be true. Our objective was to study the prevalence and pattern of cardiac autonomic neuropathy (CAN) in patients with FCPD. Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional study on consecutive male patients with FCPD was performed. Using an automated CAN System Analyzer, heart rate response to deep breathing, Valsalva maneuver, standing and blood pressure response to standing were measured. The standard Ewing's criteria were used to define normal, borderline, and abnormal values. Prevalence rates were calculated and the patients were defined to have normal autonomic function, parasympathetic, sympathetic, and combined dysfunction. Results: The prevalence of CAN in this study population was 63.3%. Isolated parasympathetic dysfunction (42.3%) was the most common abnormality. Combined sympathetic and parasympathetic dysfunction was noted in 13.3% of patients. Isolated borderline dysfunction was noted among 13.3% of patients. CAN was detected in six patients with a duration of diabetes of less than 1 year after diagnosis. Patients with autonomic dysfunction were found to have a lower body mass index (BMI) and low density lipoprotein (LDL)-cholesterol when compared to those with normal autonomic functions, which was not statistically significant. Conclusion: The prevalence of abnormal cardiac autonomic function is as high as 63.3% in the present study population which warrants regular screening of patients with FCPD for autonomic dysfunction. Patients with FCPD and autonomic dysfunction were found to have a lower BMI and lower LDL-cholesterol, which may be indicators of malnutrition in the group with autonomic dysfunction. Whether this malnutrition contributes to autonomic dysfunction needs further exploration.

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