Association between use of benzodiazepines and occurrence of acute angle-closure glaucoma in the elderly: A population-based study

Man Young Park, Woo Jung Kim, Eun Lee, Changsoo Kim, Sang Joon Son, Jin Sook Yoon, Woojae Kim, Kee Namkoong

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3 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: Because benzodiazepines (BZDs) can affect pupillae muscles, their use could be a risk factor for acute angle-closure glaucoma (AACG), which is an ophthalmic emergency. However, there is no research evidence for the association between BZDs and AACG, except two case reports. We aimed to investigate whether BZDs increase the risk of AACG in a geriatric population. Methods: We performed a case-control study using a geriatric cohort from the National Health Insurance database (2002−2013) in Korea. Case subjects (n = 1117) were patients diagnosed with AACG. Controls, people who have not been diagnosed with AACG, were randomly matched with the case according to age, sex, and index year (n = 4468). To examine the risk of BZD use for AACG, we performed conditional logistic regression analyses with potential confounders including comorbidities and concomitant medication. Results: The use of BZD within 30 days was not significantly associated with AACG risk (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] = 1.14, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.94–1.37). Further analyses showed that, compared with non-use of BZD, new BZD use had a significantly increased risk for the development of AACG (aOR = 1.62, 95% CI = 1.09–2.37). The risk was higher in the new BZD users exposed within 7 days (aOR = 3.09, 95% CI = 1.58–5.88). Conclusion: We found that BZDs increase the risk of AACG at the beginning of its use among the Korean elderly. Clinicians should monitor visual disturbance in the elderly during the early period after prescription of BZD.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-5
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Psychosomatic Research
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Jul

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korea Government (MEST) (No. NRF-2014R1A1A1007557 ); and by a grant from the Haesong Geriatric Psychiatry Research Fund, Korean Mental Health Foundation , Seoul, Republic of Korea.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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