US Pharm. 2015;40(6):HS-42.

Patients with AIDS have a fourfold increase in their risk of developing intermediate-stage age-related macular degeneration (ARMD) compared to people of the same age who are not infected with HIV, according to results from the Longitudinal Study of the Ocular Complications of AIDS (LSOCA) presented at the 2015 ARVO annual meeting in Denver. The results of the study were also published online in the American Journal of Ophthalmology.

“With HIV and AIDS patients living longer than ever before, they are at an increased risk of developing several age-related diseases at an earlier age than HIV-uninfected people including cardiovascular disease and diabetes,” said Douglas A. Jabs, MD, MBA, professor of ophthalmology and medicine at the Icahn School of Medicine at New York’s Mount Sinai and the lead author of the new study.

To determine how AIDS may contribute to ARMD, Dr. Jabs and colleagues enrolled 1,825 patients aged 13 to 73 years with AIDS at 19 sites in the United States between 1998 and 2011. The investigators graded retinal photographs for ARMD and compared participants in the LSOCA cohort to published data on an HIV-uninfected, age-matched population from the Beaver Dam Offspring Study, which also graded retinal photographs for ARMD features. The results showed that the prevalence of intermediate-stage ARMD in patients with AIDS was nearly 10% and, when adjusted for any age differences, was approximately four times greater than that in the Beaver Dam study.