Background: To investigate the incidence and prevalence of dry eye disease (DED) in Taiwan and to explore its potential risk factors. Methods: Population-based longitudinal data from 2000 to 2013 based on Taiwan National Health Insurance Research Database were used in this study. To explore potential risks factor of interest, patients who had DED diagnosis before the exposure were excluded. Each patient from the exposure and his/her matched non-exposure controls were followed until either the diagnosis of DED or censorship. Kaplan–Meier method was used to compare the hazard of DED between cohorts. Stratified Cox proportional hazard models were applied to estimate the adjusted effect. Results: The age-adjusted prevalence for men and women were 6.81% and 16.16%, respectively. The age–gender rate of the same period was 549 per 105 person-years. The propensity-adjusted hazard ratio of DED is 1.816 for the presbyopia versus non-presbyopia (with 95% CI = [1.737, 1.897] with p value < 0.0001). Conclusions: The DED incidence for women peaked at age 50–74, while that for men peaked at age ≧ 75. The incidence in young people seems stable both for women and for men. While exploring the factors of DED, there is a significant association between presbyopia and DED even after matching age/gender and comorbidity conditions. Further clinical studies are needed to justify whether the corrective refractive treatment such as presbyopic glasses to treat the frequently hyperopic status of these patients could be beneficial to both dry eye and presbyopic condition.
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