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Ophthalmology. 2012 Aug;119(8):1642-9. doi: 10.1016/j.ophtha.2012.01.053. Epub 2012 Apr 13.

Vitamins E and C and medical record-confirmed age-related macular degeneration in a randomized trial of male physicians.

Author information

1
Division of Preventive Medicine, Department of Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA. wchristen@rics.bwh.harvard.edu

Abstract

PURPOSE:

To test whether supplementation with alternate-day vitamin E or daily vitamin C affects the incidence of the diagnosis of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) in a large-scale randomized trial of male physicians.

DESIGN:

Randomized, double-masked, placebo-controlled trial.

PARTICIPANTS:

We included 14 236 apparently healthy United States male physicians aged ≥50 years who did not report a diagnosis of AMD at baseline.

METHODS:

Participants were randomly assigned to receive 400 international units (IU) of vitamin E or placebo on alternate days, and 500 mg of vitamin C or placebo daily. Participants reported new diagnoses of AMD on annual questionnaires and medical record data were collected to confirm the reports.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:

Incident diagnosis of AMD responsible for a reduction in best-corrected visual acuity to ≤20/30.

RESULTS:

After 8 years of treatment and follow-up, a total of 193 incident cases of visually significant AMD were documented. There were 96 cases in the vitamin E group and 97 in the placebo group (hazard ratio [HR], 1.03; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.78-1.37). For vitamin C, there were 97 cases in the active group and 96 in the placebo group (HR, 0.99; 95% CI, 0.75-1.31).

CONCLUSIONS:

In a large-scale, randomized trial of United States male physicians, alternate-day use of 400 IU of vitamin E and/or daily use of 500 mg of vitamin C for 8 years had no appreciable beneficial or harmful effect on risk of incident diagnosis of AMD.

TRIAL REGISTRATION:

ClinicalTrials.gov NCT00270647.

PMID:
22503302
PMCID:
PMC3535014
DOI:
10.1016/j.ophtha.2012.01.053
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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