Statin use and incident nuclear cataract.

Kleins Lab // Publications // Jun 21 2006

PubMed ID: 16788130

Author(s): Klein BE, Klein R, Lee KE, Grady LM. Statin use and incident nuclear cataract. JAMA. 2006 Jun 21;295(23):2752-8. PMID 16788130

Journal: Jama, Volume 295, Issue 23, Jun 2006

CONTEXT Statins are widely prescribed for their lipid-lowering effects but also have putative antioxidant properties. Oxidative stress is believed to play a role in the development of nuclear cataract, but little is known regarding the relationship of statin use and cataract incidence.

OBJECTIVE To evaluate the relationship of use of statins and incident cataract in adults in a midwestern community in the United States.

DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS The Beaver Dam Eye Study, an observational, longitudinal, population-based study of age-related eye disease in Beaver Dam, Wis. There were 1299 persons who were seen at the third examination in 1998-2000, had gradable photographs in both eyes, and were deemed to be at risk of developing nuclear cataract within 5 years.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE Five-year incidence of cataract with respect to statin use. Cataracts were graded from photographs taken through the participant’s dilated pupil.

RESULTS A total of 210 persons developed incident nuclear cataract in the interval from 1998-2000 to 2003-2005. Five-year incidence of nuclear cataract was 12.2% in statin users compared with 17.2% in nonusers (odds ratio [OR], 0.55; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.36-0.84), controlling for age. When only never smokers without diabetes were assessed, the age-, lipid level-, and sex-adjusted OR was 0.40 (95% CI, 0.18-0.90). Five-year incidence of cortical cataract was 9.9% in statin users and 7.5% in nonusers (OR, 1.28; 95% CI, 0.79-2.08); posterior subcapsular cataract occurred in 3.0% of statin users and 3.4% of nonusers (OR, 0.82; 95% CI, 0.39-1.71).

CONCLUSION Statin use in a general population appears to be associated with lower risk of nuclear cataract, the most common type of age-related cataract.