Marshfield, WI—New research suggests that patients who take the drug L-DOPA for Parkinson’s disease, restless leg syndrome, or other movement disorders are significantly less likely to develop age-related macular degeneration (AMD). When they do develop the most common cause of blindness in the elderly, it is at a significantly older age, according to the study conducted by the Marshfield Clinic Research Foundation. For the trial, medical records of 37,000 patients at the Marshfield Clinic were mined for individuals with AMD, or those taking L-DOPA, or those with both AMD and taking L-DOPA. Results indicate that in patients who were given L-DOPA before being diagnosed with the vision disorder, AMD was diagnosed an average of 8 years later than those not taking L-DOPA. Results of the study, posted online by the American Journal of Medicine, were confirmed in a data set of 87 million patients.

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