Early Cataracts & Cancer Risk

Baltimore Washington Eye Center, Maryland

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Early Cataracts & Cancer Risk

Researchers recently reported an 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.


Reporting in the journal Cancer Science, the official journal of the Japanese Cancer Association, they 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 we will do a routine cataract screening and exam, please share this information with them and ask them to contact Baltimore Washington Eye Center by calling 800-495-3937, visiting Baltimore Washington Eye Center or facebook.com/baltimorewashingtoneyecenter.

Baltimore Washington Eye Center is a leading eye care practice with office locations at 200 Hospital Drive, Suite 600, Glen Burnie, Maryland 21061 and River Hill Professional Center, 6100 Day Long Lane, Suite 207, Clarksville, Maryland 21029, serving the greater Baltimore and Washington, D.C. area.