Regular aspirin use may raise risk of age-related eye disorder

 

New York

Older adults who use aspirin regularly for 10 years or more may have an increased risk of developing an age-related eye disorder that can lead to vision loss, a study found.

The risk of having wet age-related macular degeneration was about twice as high for those who regularly took aspirin a decade before researchers detected it in an eye exam compared with those who didn't take the medicine, according to research Tuesday in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

About 19 percent of U.S. adults take aspirin regularly for pain, arthritis and to prevent heart attacks, the authors wrote. People shouldn't stop taking the medication because its benefits are well known, said lead author Barbara Klein. Instead, more studies are needed to understand how aspirin may contribute to the eye disorder, she said.

"There are a lot of people who take aspirin now for cardio-protective reasons," Klein, a professor of ophthalmology and visual sciences at the University of Wisconsin in Madison, said in a telephone interview. "Should this influence their taking this medicine to save their life? No, don't stop."

Macular degeneration is a leading cause of vision loss in people older than 60, according to the National Institutes of Health. It affects the part of the eye that allows people to see fine details and can lead to blindness. Treatment can slow down vision loss but not restore it.

About 9.1 million people in the United States older than 40 suffer from the condition, according to the Macular Degeneration Association. About 90 percent have the "dry" type where vision slowly becomes blurry. The rest have the "wet" type, where new blood vessels grow under the retina and leak fluid or blood. The wet type accounts for all blindness from the disease, the Sarasota, Fla.-based group said.

In Tuesday's analysis, researchers used data from the Beaver Dam Eye Study, a long-term study of age-related eye diseases in Wisconsin. They included 4,926 people who were ages 43 to 86 at the start of the trial. Patient exams were conducted every five years over two decades. Patients were asked if they regularly used aspirin at least twice a week for more than three months.

The study found that aspirin use 10 years prior to the exam in which the researchers observed patients as having macular degeneration was associated with a small but significant increase in the risk of developing wet or neovascular age- related macular degeneration, the authors wrote.

The study found that 30 of 1,462 people in the study, or 2.05 percent, who used aspirin for a decade prior had neovascular age-related macular degeneration, while 31 of 4,065, or 0.76 percent, of those who didn't use aspirin developed the vision eye disorder. After adjusting for age and sex, the incidence of neovascular macular degeneration was 1.4 percent for the aspirin users and 0.6 percent for the non-users, the authors said.

No association was seen between aspirin use and the dry form of the eye disorder or for shorter-term use of aspirin, Klein said.

Barrett Katz, a neuro-ophthalmologist at Montefiore Medical Center in New York, who wasn't an author of the paper, said the findings show that regular aspirin use may be another small risk factor for age-related macular degeneration. Other risk factors include age, race, cigarette smoking, alcohol ingestion and genetics, he said in a Dec. 17 telephone interview.

More studies are needed to replicate these findings and to show what harm, if any, aspirin has on the vision of people with the disorder or if it causes age-related macular degeneration, Katz said.

Sport
The giant banner displayed by Legia Warsaw supporters last night
football
News
i100(and it's got nothing to do with the Great British Bake Off)
News
news
Sport
footballPremiership preview: All the talking points ahead of this weekend's matches
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn evocation of the conflict through the eyes of those who lived through it
News
Angelina Jolie with her father Jon Voight
people
Arts and Entertainment
Tulisa as a judge on the X Factor in 2012
tvLouis Walsh confirms star's return
Life and Style
fashionClothes shop opens on Bill Clinton Boulevard in Pristina
Voices
The Ukip leader has consistently refused to be drawn on where he would mount an attempt to secure a parliamentary seat
voicesNigel Farage: Those who predicted we would lose momentum heading into the 2015 election are going to have to think again
Arts and Entertainment
Cara Delevingne made her acting debut in Anna Karenina in 2012
film Cara Delevingne 'in talks' to star in Zoolander sequel
News
i100
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Project Manager - Pensions

£32000 - £38000 Per Annum Bonus, Life Insurance + Other Benefits: Clearwater P...

Project Coordinator - Cisco Partner - £110 p/d

£110 per day + competitive: Orgtel: Project Coordinator (SC Cleared), Cisco Go...

KYC Analyst, Birmingham - £200-£250 p/d

£200 - £250 per day + competitive: Orgtel: KYC Analyst, Key Banking Client, Bi...

Test Manager - Banking - Yorkshire - £450 per day

£400 - £500 per day: Orgtel: Test Manager - Banking - West Yorkshire - £400-£5...

Day In a Page

Ukraine crisis: The phoney war is over as Russian troops and armour pour across the border

The phoney war is over

Russian troops and armour pour into Ukraine
Potatoes could be off the menu as crop pests threaten UK

Potatoes could be off the menu as crop pests threaten UK

The world’s entire food system is under attack - and Britain is most at risk, according to a new study
Gangnam smile: why the Chinese are flocking to South Korea to buy a new face

Gangnam smile: why the Chinese are flocking to South Korea to buy a new face

Seoul's plastic surgery industry is booming thanks to the popularity of the K-Pop look
From Mozart to Orson Welles: Creative geniuses who peaked too soon

Creative geniuses who peaked too soon

After the death of Sandy Wilson, 90, who wrote his only hit musical in his twenties, John Walsh wonders what it's like to peak too soon and go on to live a life more ordinary
Caught in the crossfire of a cyber Cold War

Caught in the crossfire of a cyber Cold War

Fears are mounting that Vladimir Putin has instructed hackers to target banks like JP Morgan
Salomé's feminine wiles have inspired writers, painters and musicians for 2,000 years

Salomé: A head for seduction

Salomé's feminine wiles have inspired writers, painters and musicians for 2,000 years. Now audiences can meet the Biblical femme fatale in two new stage and screen projects
From Bram Stoker to Stanley Kubrick, the British Library's latest exhibition celebrates all things Gothic

British Library celebrates all things Gothic

Forthcoming exhibition Terror and Wonder: The Gothic Imagination will be the UK's largest ever celebration of Gothic literature
The Hard Rock Café's owners are embroiled in a bitter legal dispute - but is the restaurant chain worth fighting for?

Is the Hard Rock Café worth fighting for?

The restaurant chain's owners are currently embroiled in a bitter legal dispute
Caribbean cuisine is becoming increasingly popular in the UK ... and there's more to it than jerk chicken at carnival

In search of Caribbean soul food

Caribbean cuisine is becoming increasingly popular in the UK ... and there's more to it than jerk chicken at carnival
11 best face powders

11 best face powders

Sweep away shiny skin with our pick of the best pressed and loose powder bases
England vs Norway: Roy Hodgson's hands tied by exploding top flight

Roy Hodgson's hands tied by exploding top flight

Lack of Englishmen at leading Premier League clubs leaves manager hamstrung
Angel Di Maria and Cristiano Ronaldo: A tale of two Manchester United No 7s

Di Maria and Ronaldo: A tale of two Manchester United No 7s

They both inherited the iconic shirt at Old Trafford, but the £59.7m new boy is joining a club in a very different state
Israel-Gaza conflict: No victory for Israel despite weeks of death and devastation

Robert Fisk: No victory for Israel despite weeks of devastation

Palestinians have won: they are still in Gaza, and Hamas is still there
Mary Beard writes character reference for Twitter troll who called her a 'slut'

Unlikely friends: Mary Beard and the troll who called her a ‘filthy old slut’

The Cambridge University classicist even wrote the student a character reference
America’s new apartheid: Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone

America’s new apartheid

Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone