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Cardiac vagal tone as a novel screening tool to recognize asymptomatic cardiovascular autonomic neuropathy: Aspects of utility in type 1 diabetes

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  • Anne-Marie Wegeberg
  • Elin D Lunde
  • Sam Riahi
  • Niels Ejskjaer
  • Asbjørn M Drewes
  • Birgitte Brock
  • Rodica Pop-Busui
  • Christina Brock
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Aims: To test the performance of the cardiac vagal tone (CVT) derived from a 5-minute ECG recording compared with the standardized cardiovascular autonomic reflex tests (CARTs). Methods: Cross-sectional study included 56 well-phenotyped adults with type 1 diabetes (19–71 years, 2–54 years disease-duration). Autonomic testing included: standardized CARTs obtained with the VAGUS™, CVT, and indices of heart rate variability (HRV) obtained at 24- and 120-hour, and electrochemical skin conductance assessed with SUDOSCAN®. ROC AUC and cut-off values were calculated for CVT to recognize CAN based on ≥ 2 (established CAN, n = 7) or 1 (borderline CAN, n = 9) abnormal CARTs and compared to HRV indices and electrochemical skin conductance. Results: Established CAN: The cut-off CVT value of 3.2LVS showed 67% sensitivity and 87% specificity (p = 0.01). Indices of HRV at either 24-hour (AUC > 0.90) and 120-hour (AUC > 0.88) performed better than CVT. Borderline CAN: The cut-off CVT value of 5.2LVS indicated 88% sensitivity and 63% specificity (p = 0.07). CVT performed better than HRV indices (AUC < 0.72). Electrochemical skin conductance (AUC:0.63–0.72) had lower sensitivity and specificity compared with CVT. Conclusions: Implementation of CVT with a clinically applicable cut-off value may be considered a quicker and accessible screening tool which could ultimately decrease the number of unrecognized CAN and initiate earlier prevention initiatives.

Original languageEnglish
Article number108517
JournalDiabetes Research and Clinical Practice
Pages (from-to)108517
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 The Author(s)

Copyright 2021 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.

    Research areas

  • Cardiac vagal tone, Cardiovascular autonomic neuropathy, Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1, Diabetic neuropathies, Screening, Sensitivity and specificity

ID: 61262311