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Plasma Antioxidants and Risk of Cortical and Nuclear Cataract
Susan Vitale, Sheila West, Judith Hallfrisch, Christina Alston, Fang Wang, Consuela Moorman, Denis Muller, Vishwa Singh and Hugh R. Taylor
Vol. 4, No. 3 (May, 1993), pp. 195-203
Published by: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3702273
Page Count: 9
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We evaluated nutritional risk factors for cataract in 660 subjects enrolled in the Baltimore Longitudinal Study on Aging. As a part of a regular cycle of visits, nuclear and cortical lens photographs were taken over a 2-year period. Measurements of plasma antioxidants (beta-carotene, ascorbic acid, and alpha-tocopherol) were obtained in this cohort as part of the study protocol up to 4 years before lens photographs were taken. We found that plasma beta-carotene and ascorbic acid levels were not associated with risk of nuclear or cortical lens opacities. Higher levels of plasma alphatocopherol, however, were associated with a reduced risk of nuclear opacity [odds ratio (OR) for highest quartile vs lowest quartile = 0.52, 95% confidence interval (CI) = 0.27-0.98; OR for middle two quartiles vs lowest quartile = 0.55, 95% CI = 0.30-0.98], after adjusting for age, sex, and history of diabetes. Middle levels of alpha-tocopherol were associated with a reduced risk of cortical opacity (OR = 0.57, 95% CI = 0.32-1.02), but no such association was observed for high levels of alpha-tocopherol. We constructed an index of overall antioxidant status, which indicated that higher levels of plasma antioxidants were not associated with risk of nuclear or cortical opacities.
Epidemiology © 1993 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins