Author(s): Fraser-Bell S, Ying-Lai M, Klein R, Varma R; Los Angeles Latino Eye Study. Prevalence and associations of epiretinal membranes in latinos: the Los Angeles Latino Eye Study. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2004 Jun;45(6):1732-6. PMID 15161833
PURPOSE To determine age- and gender-specific prevalence and associations of epiretinal membranes (ERMs) in adult Latinos.
METHODS The Los Angeles Latino Eye Study (LALES) is a population-based study of eye disease among Latinos aged 40 or more years. Complete ophthalmic examinations included stereoscopic fundus photography. Masked photographic grading was used to identify and classify ERMs as cellophane macular reflex (CMR) without retinal folds or preretinal macular fibrosis (PMF) with folds.
RESULTS Of the 6142 persons examined at the clinic, 5982 (97%) had gradable retinal photographs. The mean age of the participants was 54.7 +/- 10.7 years; 58% were women. ERMs were present in 18.5% (95% confidence interval [CI]: 17.5%-19.5%) of the participants. Of the participants with ERMs, 19.9% had bilateral ERMs. The prevalence of ERMs increased from 10.1% in persons 40 to 49 years of age to 35.7% in those aged 70 to 79 years and was 22.5% in persons aged 80 years or more. The prevalence was similar in men and women. CMR was present in 16.3% (95% CI: 15.3%-17.2%) and PMF in 2.2% (95% CI: 1.9%-2.6%). Retinal folds involved the fovea in 11% of PMF cases. On average, eyes with central PMF had poorer visual acuity than did eyes without (P < 0.0002). Epiretinal membranes (ERMs) were present in 71% of eyes with macular holes. ERMs were also more common in individuals who had undergone cataract surgery (39.9%), those with proliferative diabetic retinopathy (25.7%), and those with any retinal disease (27.5%).
CONCLUSIONS ERMs occur frequently in Latinos, often bilaterally. The associations of ERMs with proliferative retinopathy, retinal lesions, macular holes, and cataract surgery were confirmed. Central PMF is associated with reduced visual acuity.