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Arterial stiffness and incident glaucoma: a large population-based cohort study.

PURPOSE: To investigate whether arterial stiffness, assessed oscillometrically, is associated with incident glaucoma in the Vitamin D Assessment (ViDA) Study cohort, aged 50-84 years.

DESIGN: Prospective, population-based cohort study METHODS: : Arterial stiffness was assessed in 4713 participants without known glaucoma (mean±SD age = 66±8 years) from 5 April 2011 to 6 November 2012 by way of aortic PWV (aPWV), estimated carotid-femoral PWV (ePWV) and aortic PP (aPP). Incident glaucoma was identified through linkage to national prescription and hospital discharge registers. Relative risks of glaucoma for each arterial stiffness measure were estimated by Cox proportional hazards regression, over the continuum of values and by quartiles.

RESULTS: During a mean±SD follow-up of 10.5±0.4 years, 301 participants developed glaucoma. Arterial stiffness, as measured by aPWV (Hazard ratio (HR) per SD increase, 1.36, 95%CI 1.14-1.62) and ePWV (HR per SD increase, 1.40, 95%CI 1.14-1.71) but not aPP (HR per SD increase, 1.06, 95%CI 0.92-1.23) was associated with incident glaucoma. When arterial stiffness was analyzed as a categorical variable, the highest quartiles of aPWV (HR, 2.62, 95%CI 1.52-4.52; Ptrend =0.007), ePWV (HR, 2.42, 95%CI 1.37-4.27; Ptrend =0.03), and aPP (HR, 1.68, 95%CI 1.10-2.5; Ptrend =0.02) were associated with the development of glaucoma.

CONCLUSIONS: Arterial stiffness measured with a simple oscillometric device predicted the development of glaucoma and could potentially be used in clinical practice to help identify people at risk of this condition. It may also present a new therapeutic research avenue, including in respect of systemic antihypertensives.

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