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Nathan Dhablania, Mina Torres, Bruce Burkemper, Roberta McKean-Cowdin, Rohit Varma; Prevalence of Lens Opacities in Adult African Americans: The African American Eye Disease Study (AFEDS). Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2020;61(7):3860.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
To provide estimates of age- and gender-specific prevalence of nuclear, cortical, posterior subcapsular (PSC), mixed lens opacities and cataract extraction in a population-based sample of African American adults ≥ 40 years of age.
Data for these analyses was derived from the African American Eye Disease Study (AFEDS), a population-based sample of adult African Americans, aged 40 years and older, residing in and around the city of Inglewood, Los Angeles County, California. All participants underwent a detailed home interview and a comprehensive eye examination that included an assessment of the presence and severity of lens opacification, using the slit lamp–based Lens Opacities Classification System II (LOCS II). All lens changes (including pseudophakia/aphakia), nuclear only, PSC-only, cortical-only, mixed opacities and pseudophakia/aphakia were evaluated. Frequency distributions and chi-square test analyses were used to determine the age- and gender-specific prevalence for each opacity type and cataract extraction.
Of the 7,957 eligible subjects, 6,347 (80%) completed the ophthalmic examination. Of those with LOCS II grading (n=6,316), 622 (10.6%) had cortical-only opacities, 602 (10.3%) had nuclear-only opacities, 21 (0.4%) had PSC-only opacities, and 1386 (23.6%) had mixed-type opacities. Females had higher prevalence of cortical only compared to males (11.4% vs 10.6%, respectively, p=0.02). No other gender differences were observed. The prevalence of all lens changes (49.3%) were higher in older African Americans compared to those who were younger (P<0.0001). Of the participants with mixed opacities, 180 (12.9%) had monocular visual impairment and 74 (5.3%) participants had binocular impairment. Six hundred sixty (10.5%) individuals had undergone cataract extraction in at least one eye.
Our data provides the largest and most comprehensive, population-based estimates of prevalence and severity of lens opacities in African Americans. Nuclear and cortical lens opacities were the most common type. Compared to other racial/ethnic groups, African Americans have a higher age-specific prevalence of mixed opacities compared to Latinos (LALES), Chinese Americans (CHES) and Afro-Caribbeans (Barbados). Follow-up data is needed to understand the natural history of lens opacities in this population.
This is a 2020 ARVO Annual Meeting abstract.
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