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Nathan Carpenter, Samuel Lohstreter, Michelle Cho, James Beal; Association between statin use and risk of developing cataracts. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2013;54(15):896.
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The purpose of this study is to determine the association between statin use and risk of developing cataracts. There is conflicting evidence that the use of statins may increase the risk of cataracts. Statins are widely prescribed to patients with various medical histories to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and the complications thereof.
A hospital-based case-control retrospective chart review was conducted on patients with and without cataracts from 31 October 2010 through 31 October 2012. The subject population resides predominantly from northeastern North Dakota and northwestern Minnesota in the United States. Cases (n=34) were subjects between ages 30-79 years diagnosed with cataracts. Controls (n=29) were subjects ages 30-79 years seen at the same hospital for an annual physical exam or annual eye exam without a cataract diagnosis. Demographic and clinical characteristics of the subjects abstracted from their medical charts included: age, sex, presence of cataract, cataract grade, cataract type, visual acuity, statin use, statin dose, statin duration, total cholesterol (TC), triglycerides (TG), high density lipoprotein (HDL), low density lipoprotein (LDL), coronary artery disease, hypertension, smoking history, race, and body mass index. SPSS 20.0 for Windows was used to perform analysis. All statistical tests were two-tailed with p<0.05 considered to be significant. Institutional Review Boards of both Altru Health System and the University of North Dakota approved the study.
The mean age of subjects with cataracts versus those without cataracts (66.7 ±8.1 vs. 60.8 ±13.7, p=0.047). The rate of statin use in all subjects was 43% (27/63). The rate of statin use in subjects with cataracts was 53% (18/34) and in subjects without cataracts was 31% (9/29). No association between the use of statins and cataracts was found (OR=2.5, 95% CI 0.89 to 7.04, p=0.082). The mean visual acuity for subjects with statin use was worse (20/40) than subjects with no statin use (20/32) with documented cataracts. No significant differences were found between cases and controls for gender, lipid panel (TC, TG, HDL, and LDL), coronary artery disease, hypertension, smoking, or obesity.
The study indicates no association between statin use and risk of developing cataracts.
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