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Prevalence and risk factors of retinal vein occlusion in an Asian population
  1. L L Lim1,
  2. N Cheung1,
  3. J J Wang1,2,
  4. F M A Islam1,
  5. P Mitchell2,
  6. S M Saw3,4,
  7. T Aung4,5,
  8. T Y Wong1,4,5
  1. 1
    Centre for Eye Research Australia, University of Melbourne, Australia
  2. 2
    Centre for Vision Research, University of Sydney, Australia
  3. 3
    Department of Community, Occupational and Family Medicine, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore, Singapore
  4. 4
    Singapore Eye Research Institute, Singapore National Eye Centre, Singapore
  5. 5
    Department of Ophthalmology, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore, Singapore
  1. Professor T Y Wong, Centre for Eye Research Australia, The Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital, 32 Gisborne Street, Melbourne 3002, Australia; twong{at}


Aim: To describe the prevalence and risk factors of retinal vein occlusion (RVO) in an Asian population.

Methods: The Singapore Malay Eye Study is a population-based, cross-sectional study of 3280 (78.7%) Malay adults (aged 40–80 years) living in Singapore. All participants underwent retinal photography, standardised interview, clinical examinations and laboratory investigations. RVO (central or branch) was graded based on the Blue Mountains Eye Study (BMES) protocol from retinal photographs.

Results: The overall prevalence of RVO was 0.7% (n = 22) (95% CI 0.4 to 1.0) (18 branch and five central RVO cases). There was no significant gender difference in RVO prevalence. RVO was associated with higher systolic blood pressure (age-adjusted odds ratio (OR) per SD increase 1.54, CI 1.02 to 2.31), ocular perfusion pressure (OR per SD increase 1.49, CI 1.03 to 2.16), a history of angina (OR 5.18, CI 1.49 to 18.0) and heart attack (OR 4.26, CI 1.47 to 12.3), and higher total cholesterol (OR per SD increase 1.55, CI 1.07 to 2.24) and LDL (OR per SD increase 1.47, CI 1.02 to 2.12) cholesterol levels.

Conclusions: The prevalence of RVO in this Asian population was lower than Caucasians in the BMES, although the systemic associations of RVO were largely similar to BMES and other studies.

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  • Funding:This study was supported by the National Medical Research Council Grants No. 0796/2003, 0863/2004 and CSI/0002/2005, and Biomedical Research Council Grant No 501/1/25-5. Additional support was provided by the Singapore Tissue Network and the Ministry of Health, Singapore.

  • Competing interests: None.

  • Ethics approval: Ethics approval was obtained from the Institutional Review Board of the Singapore Eye Research Institute.

  • Patient consent: Obtained.