Aim. Socio-economic deprivation plays a major role in health and disease, however its role in retinal detachment has not been studied. We used data from the Scottish Retinal Detachment Study to investigate any association between retinal detachment, macular status at presentation, and deprivation,.
Methods. Prospective multicentre population based observational study. Data was collected on all patients with primary retinal detachment presenting in Scotland between 1 November 2007 and 31 October 2008. Every patient was allocated a validated deprivation ranking according to their postcodes based on the Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation (SIMD), which takes into account income, employment, health, education, housing, geographic accessibility and crime in 6505 postcode based datazones. The patients were divided into four quartiles according to their SIMD ranking.
Results. 572 patients were included. The annual incidence of detachment declined from 15.4/100,000 in the most affluent quartile to 13.6/100,000 in the second, 9.3/100,000 in the third and 6.9/100,000 in the most deprived (x² for trend = 50.2, p<0.0001). The trend was more marked for men than women, but was present in both sexes. There were no differences in the rate of macula-off detachments, nor the number of quadrants detached. Rates of pseudophakic and myopic detachment were evenly distributed across all quartiles.
Conclusions. Retinal detachment appears to be associated with affluence. This has not been previously reported and may be partly responsible for the variation in estimates of the incidence of retinal detachment. It may also have implications for service planning. The reason for this association is unknown.