This population-based retrospective cohort study investigated the effectiveness of erythropoietin (EPO) treatment in reducing the risk of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) in hemodialysis patients, using the National Health Insurance Research Data of Taiwan. From the database, we identified 147,318 end-stage renal disease (ESRD) patients on hemodialysis who had been diagnosed in 2000–2014 to establish the propensity-score-matched EPO user cohort and non-EPO user cohort with equal sample size of 15,992. By the end of 2016, the cumulative incidence of AMD in EPO users was about 3.29% lower than that in non-EPO users (Kaplan–Meier survival p < 0.0001). The risk of AMD was 43% lower in EPO users than in non-EPO users, with an adjusted hazard ratio (aHR) of 0.57 (95% confidence interval (CI) = 0.51–0.64) estimated in the multivariate Cox model. A significant negative dose–response relationship was identified between the EPO dosage and the risk of AMD (p < 0.0001). Another beneficial effect of EPO treatment was a reduced risk of both exudative AMD (aHR = 0.48, 95% CI = 0.40–0.61) and non-exudative AMD (aHR = 0.61, 95% CI = 0.53–0.69), also in similar dose–response relationships (p < 0.0001). Our findings suggest that EPO treatment for hemodialysis patients could reduce AMD risk in a dose–response relationship.
- age-related macular degeneration
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology
- Computer Science Applications
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
- Organic Chemistry
- Inorganic Chemistry