Antioxidants (1998) antioxidant vitamins and nuclear opacities: the longitudinal study of cataract.


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Researchers evaluated the relationship between the presence of antioxidants in the eye tissue and blood levels and the risk of development of cataracts. The study was called the Longitudinal Study of Cataract and involved 764 patients.

At the beginning of the study the scientists collected dietary information, use of vitamin supplements, and blood samples measuring levels of vitamin E. In addition eye exams with specific data about lens clarity were taken including use of lens photographs which were graded according to a standard clarity protocol. This information and data was again collected on yearly follow-up visits.

The scientists wanted to determine whether nutrition was a factor in development of cataracts over time. They found that the risk of cataract formation decreased in the regular users of multivitamin supplements (1/3 decrease in risk), vitamin E supplements, and in the people with higher blood levels of vitamin E (1/2 the risk). The results were similar to earlier research and were observed only, not clinical trials.

Researchers: Leske MC; Chylack LT Jr; He Q; Wu SY; Schoenfeld E; Friend J; Wolfe J

Published: Antioxidant vitamins: the longitudinal cataract study, Ophthalmology (United States) May 1998