Purpose: To determine whether an association exists between dry eye disease (DED) and statin use and/or dyslipidemia. Design: Retrospective, case-control study. Methods: SETTING: University of North Carolina (UNC)-affiliated healthcare facilities. STUDY POPULATION: 72,931 patients seen at UNC ophthalmology clinics over a 10-year period. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Odds ratios (ORs) calculated between DED and a history of low, moderate, or high-intensity statin use; and ORs calculated between DED and abnormal lipid panel values. Results: Total of 39,336 individuals (53.9% female) were analyzed after exclusion of individuals with confounding risk factors for DED. Of these, 3,399 patients (8.6%) carried a diagnosis of DED. Low-, moderate-, and high-intensity statin regimens were used by 751 subjects (1.9%), 2,655 subjects (6.8%), and 1,036 subjects (2.6%). Lipid abnormalities were identified as total cholesterol >200 mg/dL, 4,558 subjects (11.6%); high-density lipoprotein (HDL) <40 mg/dL, 2,078 subjects (5.3%); low-density lipoprotein (LDL) >130 mg/dL, 2,756 subjects (7.0%); and triglycerides (TGs) >150 mg/dL, 2,881 subjects (7.3%). The odds ratios (OR) of carrying a diagnosis of DED given the presence of low-, moderate-, and high-intensity statin use were 1.39 (95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.13-1.72); OR 1.47 (95% CI: 1.30-1.65), and OR 1.46 (95% CI: 1.21-1.75), respectively. The OR of carrying a diagnosis of DED given the presence of total cholesterol >200 mg/dL, HDL <40 mg/dL, LDL >130 mg/dL, and TGs >150 mg/dL were 1.66 (95% CI: 1.52-1.82), 1.45 (95% CI: 1.26-1.67), 1.55 (95% CI: 1.39-1.74), and 1.43 (95% CI: 1.27-1.61), respectively. Conclusions: A history of statin use or dyslipidemia is associated with an increased odds of having a DED diagnosis. Further studies are needed to determine whether statin use and/or dyslipidemia increases the risk of DED.
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