17 November 2021 In General Health

BACKGROUND: Myopia is a highly prevalent disorder, and one of the first causes of blindness. In turn, alcohol consumption has been shown to be a risk factor for many diseases and a main contributor to the global burden of disease. However, no studies have investigated the relationship between alcohol intake and myopia. Our aim was to prospectively assess the association between alcohol intake and the development or progression of myopia.

METHODS: In a Spanish dynamic prospective cohort (the SUN Project) we assessed 15,642 university graduates, recruited between 1999 and 2018 and followed up biennially through mailed questionnaires. Alcohol intake was assessed with a validated 136-item food frequency questionnaire. Development or progression of myopia was collected in subsequent questionnaires during follow-up every two years.

RESULTS: Alcohol intake was linearly and significantly associated with a higher risk of myopia development or progression: the OR for 10-year incidence/progression of myopia was 1.05, 95% CI 1.01-1.09 per each 10-grams increase in alcohol intake.

CONCLUSIONS: Alcohol consumption might lead to the development or progression of myopia, although confirmation is needed for the mechanisms through which this association may occur, thus further research is needed to verify these findings.

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