Gout and the risk of age-related macular degeneration in the elderly

Academic Article


  • Objective To assess whether gout is associated with incident age-related macular degeneration (AMD) Methods We used the 5% Medicare claims data from 2006–12 for all beneficiaries who were enrolled in Medicare fee-for-service (Parts A, B) and not enrolled in a Medicare Advantage Plan, and resided in the U.S. People were censored at the occurrence of new diagnosis of AMD, death or the end of study (12/31/2012), whichever occurred first. We used multivariable-adjusted Cox regression analyses to assess the association of gout with incident AMD, adjusted for demographics, comorbidity, and use of medications for cardiovascular disease and gout. Hazard ratios and 95% confidence intervals were calculated. Results In this observational cohort study, of the 1,684,314 eligible people, 116,097 developed incident AMD (6.9%). Incidence rates of AMD per 1,000 person-years were 20.1 for people with gout and 11.7 for people without gout. In multivariable-adjusted analyses, a diagnosis of gout was significantly associated with a higher risk of incident AMD with a hazard ratio of 1.39 (95% CI, 1.35, 1.43). This association was confirmed in sensitivity analyses that substituted Charlson-Romano comorbidity index continuous score with either a categorical Charlson-Romano comorbidity index score or individual Charlson-Romano index comorbidities plus hypertension, hyperlipidemia and coronary artery disease. Other covariates significantly associated with higher hazards of incident AMD were older age, female gender, White race/ethnicity, and higher Charlson-Romano comorbidity index score. Conclusions We noted a novel association of gout with AMD in the elderly. Future studies should investigate the pathways that mediate this association.
  • Authors

    Published In

  • PLoS One  Journal
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Singh JA; Cleveland JD
  • Volume

  • 13
  • Issue

  • 7