Drug Safety

, Volume 36, Issue 10, pp 1017–1024

Statin Use and Cataract Surgery: A Nationwide Retrospective Cohort Study in Elderly Ethnic Chinese Patients

  • Chao-Lun Lai
  • Wen-Yi Shau
  • Chia-Hsuin Chang
  • Ming-Fong Chen
  • Mei-Shu Lai
Original Research Article

DOI: 10.1007/s40264-013-0076-0

Cite this article as:
Lai, CL., Shau, WY., Chang, CH. et al. Drug Saf (2013) 36: 1017. doi:10.1007/s40264-013-0076-0

Abstract

Background

Since a report of lenticular opacities in dogs treated with high dosages of statins, the debate on the relationship between statin therapy and cataracts has not reached a conclusion.

Objective

The aim of this study was to evaluate the association between statin therapy and the risk of cataract surgery in an elderly ethnic Chinese population using time-dependent analysis to minimize immortal time bias.

Methods

A retrospective cohort study using the Longitudinal Health Insurance Database 2005 randomly sampled from the National Health Insurance Research Database, Taiwan, was conducted. A total of 50,165 adults aged between 65 and 90 years in 1998 without records of statin therapy or diagnosis of cataracts between July 1997 and December 1997 were included in the analysis. The first record of lens extraction within the follow-up period (1998–2009) was set as the study endpoint. A propensity score was derived using a logistic regression model to model the receipt of statin therapy as a function of the baseline characteristics for every subject. We used the time-dependent Cox regression model to test the relative hazard of undergoing cataract surgery between statin users and non-users, while use of statins was treated as a time-dependent variable, controlling for baseline age and individual propensity score.

Results

Of the 50,165 enrolled subjects, 17,670 individuals with an incident lens extraction were identified during a median follow-up of 10.7 years. The incidence of cataract surgery was 49.7/1,000 person-years in the statin-using period compared with 38.5/1,000 person-years in the statin-non-using period. The adjusted hazard ratio of cataract surgery was 1.20 (95 % CI 1.14–1.27; P < 0.001) in statin users compared with statin non-users.

Conclusion

Statin therapy was associated with a modestly increased risk of cataract surgery. We suggest regular checks for lens opacity in statin users.

Supplementary material

40264_2013_76_MOESM1_ESM.doc (94 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOC 93 kb)

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Chao-Lun Lai
    • 1
  • Wen-Yi Shau
    • 2
  • Chia-Hsuin Chang
    • 3
    • 4
  • Ming-Fong Chen
    • 3
  • Mei-Shu Lai
    • 4
    • 5
  1. 1.Department of Internal MedicineNational Taiwan University Hospital Hsin-Chu BranchHsin-ChuTaiwan
  2. 2.Division of Health Technology AssessmentCenter for Drug EvaluationTaipeiTaiwan
  3. 3.Department of Internal MedicineNational Taiwan University HospitalTaipeiTaiwan
  4. 4.Graduate Institute of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine, College of Public HealthNational Taiwan UniversityTaipeiTaiwan
  5. 5.Center for Comparative Effectiveness Research, National Center of Excellence for Clinical Trial and ResearchNational Taiwan University HospitalTaipeiTaiwan