OBJECTIVE - Type 2 diabetes is associated with a moderate degree of cerebral atrophy and a higher white matter hyperintensity (WMH) volume. Flow these brain-imaging abnormalities evolve over time is unknown. The present study aims to quantify cerebral atrophy and WMH progression over 4 years in type 2 diabetes.
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS - A total of 55 patients with type 2 diabetes and 28 age-, sex-, and lQ-matched control participants had two 1.5T magnetic resonance imaging scans with a 4-year interval. Volumetric measurements of total brain, peripheral cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), lateral ventricles, and WMH were performed with k-nearest neighbor-based probabilistic segmentation. All volumes were expressed as percentage of intracranial volume. Linear regression analyses, adjusted for age and sex, were performed to compare brain volumes between the groups and to identify determinants of volumetric change within the type 2 diabetic group.
RESULTS - At baseline, patients with type 2 diabetes had a significantly smaller total brain volume and larger peripheral CSF volume than control participants. In both groups, all volumes showed a significant change over time. Patients with type 2 diabetes had a greater increase in lateral ventricular volume than control participants (mean adjusted between-group difference in change over time [95% CI]: 0.11% in 4 years [0.00 to 0.22], P = 0.047).
CONCLUSIONS - The greater increase in lateral ventricular volume over time in patients with type 2 diabetes compared with control participants shows that type 2 diabetes is associated with a slow increase of cerebral atrophy over the course of years.