Do Early Cataracts Predict Cancer Risk?

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Do Early Cataracts Predict Cancer Risk?

Early Cataracts & Increased Cancer Risk
In the absence of a strong family history of early cataracts, the development of cataracts at an unusually early age tends to raise questions about a patient’s overall health. There has been a suspicious association between the early onset of cataracts-in patients under 55 years old and the potential risk for developing cancer. This is thought to be due to the fact that early onset cataract is linked to insufficient antioxidative activity in one’s metabolism-which is also a known factor for increasing the risk of cancer.  

Researchers reporting the journal Cancer Science, the official journal of the Japanese Cancer Association investigated the risk of cancer after being diagnosed with early onset cataract. The researchers examined claims from the Taiwan National Health Insurance Research Database (NHIRD) of patients with early onset cataract, aged 20-55 and also compared it to a group of the same age range without cataracts. By using powerful statistical analysis they found that the overall incidence rate of all cancers was 2.19-fold higher in the early onset cataract group as compared to those without cataracts.  Further they were able to analyze where these patients were at greatest risk of developing cancer and found head and neck areas highest, followed by liver cancer and then breast cancer. This study suggests that patients with early onset cataract are at an increased risk of being diagnosed with cancer in subsequent years.

If you or someone you know is concerned about early cataract development or needs a regular eye exam where do a routine cataract screening and exam, please share this information with them and ask them to call Doctor & Associates-203-227-4113, visit Doctor & Associates in Fairfield County or to schedule an appointment.

Doctor & Associates offices are located at 129 Kings Highway North, Westport, Connecticut 06880, 195 Danbury Road, Wilton, Connecticut 06897 and 148 East Avenue, Norwalk, Connecticut 06851.