Age-related macular degeneration is associated with less physical activity among US adults: Cross-sectional study

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Background: We have a limited understanding of the effects of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) on physical activity (PA), and we have no prevalence estimates of the daily movement patterns among Americans with AMD. Therefore, we examined the association between AMD and PA and provided estimates of the daily movement patterns of Americans with AMD. Methods: Data from the 2005-2006 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey were used, including 1,656 adults (40-85 yrs). Retinal imaging was performed to classify individuals as no AMD, early AMD, or late AMD. Participants wore an ActiGraph 7164 accelerometer for 7 days to measure PA behavior. Results: 93.2% of participants with late AMD were in the least desirable group (not sufficiently active and having a negative light intensity-sedentary behavior balance). After adjustments (including age), participants with late AMD, as compared to those with no AMD, engaged in 50% less moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) (RR = 0.50; 95% CI: 0.28-0.90). When visual acuity was entered into the model along with the other covariates, the association between late AMD and MVPA was no longer significant (RR = 0.54; 95% CI: 0.29-1.01), suggesting that visual acuity may partially mediate this relationship. Conclusions: Individuals with late AMD engage in very little moderate-to-vigorous physical activity. Visually acuity, in part, explains the relationship between late AMD and PA.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere0125394
JournalPloS one
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1 2015


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • General

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