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S.W. Reeves, F.A. Sloan, P.P. Lee, L. Van Scoyoc, G.J. Jaffe; Uveitis in the Elderly: Epidemiological Data From the National Long Term Care Survey Medicare Cohort . Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2005;46(13):5011.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
Purpose: There is a paucity of population–based data on the epidemiology of uveitis in the elderly. In the past 40 years, only two U.S. population–based studies have examined the epidemiology of uveitis. The conclusions of these studies on the burden of uveitis in the elderly differ greatly. In this analysis, we use Medicare claims data to define the population–based incidence and prevalence of uveitis in the United States elderly population. Methods: A cohort of 21,644 Medicare beneficiaries enrolled in the National Long–Term Care Survey, a random sample of US adults 65 years and older, was followed from 1991 through 1999. ICD–9 diagnosis codes specific to uveitis were queried. To decrease the inclusion of uveitis caused by surgery, diagnoses occurring within 3 months of intraocular surgery were excluded. Incidence and prevalence of uveitis by anatomic location and specific disease diagnosis were calculated for each year in the study. Results: The incidence of uveitis ranged from 3.9/1000 to 6.2/1000 persons, and averaged 4.5/1000. The prevalence of uveitis increased from 6.2/1000 in 1991 to 62.4/1000 in 1999. Anterior uveitis was the most common form of uveitis in this population, with an average incidence 2.8 cases per 1000 beneficiaries. The 75–84 year old age group had a markedly higher incidence of anterior uveitis compared to those older and younger, averaging 7.0/1000 across all years of the study. Posterior and panuveitis/endopthalmitis had incidences of 1.5 cases per 1000 or less in every year of the analysis. Only 2 total cases of intermediate uveitis occurred during the study period. Among available ICD–9 codes designating a specific disease process, primary ocular histoplasmosis syndrome was the most common specific uveitis diagnosis made in this population. Conclusions: The burden of uveitis in the elderly is significant and may be higher than previously thought. Longitudinal analysis of Medicare claims data may provide a useful tool for monitoring uncommon diseases, such as uveitis, in the elderly population.
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