The prevalence of age-related maculopathy in iceland: Reykjavik eye study

Arch Ophthalmol. 2003 Mar;121(3):379-85. doi: 10.1001/archopht.121.3.379.


Objective: To examine the age- and sex-specific prevalence of age-related maculopathy (ARM) and age-related macular degeneration (AMD) in citizens of Reykjavik, Iceland, who were 50 years and older.

Design: Random sample, cross sectional.

Materials and methods: Response rate was 75.8%. The presence and severity of various characteristics of drusen and pigmentary changes that are typical of ARM and AMD were determined by grading stereoscopic color fundus photographs, using the international classification and grading system for ARM and AMD.

Results: We were able to evaluate 1021 right-eye and 1020 left-eye macular photographs. There was no statistically significant difference between right and left eyes. In people aged 50 to 59 years, 4.8% of participants (95% confidence interval [CI], 2.6-7.0) were found to have intermediate soft drusen measuring 63 to 125 micro m in either eye; 1.2% (95% CI, 0.0-2.3) had large soft distinct drusen larger than 125 micro m; and 0.6% (95% CI, 0.0-1.4) had large soft, crystalline, or semisolid drusen. The same figures for those 80 years and older were 18.2% (95% CI, 9.8-26.6), 10.9% (95% CI, 4.0-17.8), and 25.5% (95% CI, 18.4-32.6), respectively. Geographic atrophy was found in either eye in 9.2% of those participants 70 years and older (95% CI, 5.6-12.7), and exudative macular degeneration was found in 2.3% of participants 70 years and older (95% CI, 0.5-4.1).

Conclusion: Geographic atrophy was found to be more common in our study than in other population-based studies.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Age Distribution
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Fundus Oculi
  • Humans
  • Iceland / epidemiology
  • Macular Degeneration / diagnosis
  • Macular Degeneration / epidemiology*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Photography
  • Prevalence
  • Sex Distribution