Purpose: We tested whether exudative ARM was associated with low whole blood levels of selenium (Se). Methods: Blood samples, drawn from 10 exudative ARM patients (61.2-76.1 yr) and 9 healthy-eyed (66.9-75.1 yr) subjects, were analyzed by atomic absorption spectroscopy. Results: Selenium concentration was significantly lower in the ARM group (186.6 μg/l) than in controls (207.0 μg/l). Because many ARM patients took Se supplements, we tested the effect on blood Se of 80 μg per day of sodium selenate. We found no enduring effects of supplementation for healthy-eyed, younger adults. Conclusions: Significant group differences in this preliminary study indicate a larger-scale study of blood Se concentration in exudative ARM patients is warranted. If the effect of Se supplementation on the progression of exudative ARM is tested in future trials, it will be important to use organic Se, to identify the components of blood affected, and to observe protocol for at least six months.
- Exudative age-related maculopathy
- Red blood cells