Authors: Joanna Ciszewska, Marta Suwalska, Ewa Sedak, Dariusz Kecik, Warsaw, Poland

Introduction:

Recent studies have connected the etiology of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) with vascular pathologies. The aim of our study was to evaluate the incidence of coexisting cardiovascular diseases and cardiovascular risk factors in open cohort of patients (pts) with both wet and dry type of AMD.

Material and Methods:

Consecutive 156 pts, mean age 70.8±12.1 years, with diagnosed AMD, treated at the Department of Ophthalmology of Warsaw Medical University, were prospectively included to the study. There were 109 females (69.8%) and 47 (30.2%) males with dry (47.9%) or wet (52.1%) form of AMD. All patients were screened in terms of presence of cardiovascular disease, risk factors of atherosclerosis, history of medical or invasive treatment of cardiovascular diseases. Collected data were correlated with the clinical status of AMD. Results: Most frequently our patients presented with coronary artery disease (50 patients; 32%) and atherosclerosis risk factors: arterial hypertension (127 patients, 81.4%), diabetes (31 patients, 19.8%) and hyperlipidemia (77 patients, 49.3%). The mean BMI was slightly elevated to 27.6 (+/- 4.3) kg/m2. Diabetes significantly correlated with the classic form of neovascularization (r=0.26, p=0.02). However, occult neovascularization significantly correlated with hyperlipidemia (r=0.28, p=0.01).

Conclusions:

In patients with AMD, the incidence of both cardiovascular diseases and cardiovascular risk factors is significantly elevated. A strict coexistence of AMD with atherosclerosis suggests a common etiology of both disorders.