Objective: To examine the association between cigarette smoking and age-related maculopathy (ARM) including age-related macular degeneration (AMD) in the European population. Design: Cross-sectional study. Participants: Four thousand seven hundred fifty randomly sampled ≥65-year-olds from 7 study centers across Europe (Norway, Estonia, United Kingdom, France, Italy, Greece, and Spain). Methods: Participants underwent an eye examination and digital retinal photography. The images were graded at a single center. Smoking history was ascertained by a structured questionnaire administered by trained fieldworkers. Multinomial and binary logistic regressions were used to examine the association between smoking history and ARM grade and type of AMD, taking account of potential confounders and the multicenter study design. Main Outcome Measures: Photographic images were graded according to the International Classification System for ARM and stratified using the Rotterdam staging system into 5 exclusive stages (ARM 0-3 and ARM 4, also known as AMD). Age-related macular degeneration also was classified as neovascular AMD or geographic atrophy (GA). Results: One hundred fifty-eight cases were categorized as AMD (109 neovascular AMD and 49 GA); 2260 had no signs of ARM (ARM 0). Current smokers had increased odds of neovascular AMD (odds ratio [OR], 2.6; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.4-4.8) or GA (OR, 4.8; 95% CI, 2.1-11.1), whereas for ex-smokers the odds were around 1.7. Compared with people with unilateral AMD, those with bilateral AMD were more likely to have a history of heavy smoking in the previous 25 years (OR, 5.1; 95% CI, 1.3-20.0). The attributable fraction for AMD due to smoking was 27% (95% CI, 19%-33%). There was no consistent association with ARM grades 1 to 3 and smoking. Conclusions: These findings highlight the need for increasing public awareness of the risks associated with smoking and the benefit of quitting smoking. Patients with unilateral disease who are current smokers should be advised of the risk of second-eye disease.

doi.org/10.1016/j.ophtha.2006.09.022, hdl.handle.net/1765/35790
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Chakravarthy, U., Augood, C., Bentham, G., de Jong, P., Rahu, M., Seland, J., … Fletcher, A. E. (2007). Cigarette Smoking and Age-Related Macular Degeneration in the EUREYE Study. Ophthalmology, 114(6), 1157–1163. doi:10.1016/j.ophtha.2006.09.022