Objective: To estimate the prevalence and risk factors for dry eye disease (DED) among US men.
Methods: Cross-sectional prevalence survey among male participants 50 years and older in the Physicians' Health Studies I (N = 18,596) and II (N = 6848). We defined DED as the presence of clinically diagnosed dry eye or severe symptoms (both dryness and irritation constantly or often). We calculated the age-standardized prevalence of DED adjusted to the age distribution of US men in 2004 and projected estimates forward to 2030. We compared DED prevalence with a similar cohort of women and examined associations with possible risk factors.
Results: The prevalence of DED increased with age, from 3.90% among men aged 50 to 54 years to 7.67% among men 80 years and older (P for trend <.001). High blood pressure (odds ratio, 1.28; 95% confidence interval, 1.12-1.45) and benign prostatic hyperplasia (odds ratio, 1.26; 95% confidence interval, 1.09-1.44) were associated with a higher risk of DED. Use of antidepressants, antihypertensives, and medications to treat benign prostatic hyperplasia were also associated with increased risk of DED. The age-standardized prevalence of DED was 4.34%, or 1.68 million men 50 years and older, and is expected to affect more than 2.79 million US men by 2030.
Conclusions: Dry eye disease is prevalent and increases with age, hypertension, benign prostatic hyperplasia, and antidepressant use.