Cancer Risk in Patients with Fuchs Endothelial Corneal Dystrophy

Timothy T. Xu, Keith H. Baratz, Michael P. Fautsch, David O. Hodge, Michael A. Mahr

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose:The purpose of this study is to quantify cancer risk in patients with Fuchs endothelial corneal dystrophy (FECD).Methods:Using the 2014 to 2016 Medicare Limited 5% Data Sets - Carrier Line File, US Medicare fee-for-service beneficiaries (aged 65 years or older) with FECD and cancer were identified through International Classification of Diseases, ninth and 10th Revision diagnostic codes from January 1, 2014, to December 31, 2016. The main outcome measures were odds ratios (ORs) of cancer at various anatomic locations in patients with versus without FECD.Results:Of the 1,462,740 Medicare beneficiaries, 15,534 patients (1.1%) had an International Classification of Disease code for FECD. Compared with US Medicare beneficiaries without FECD, patients with FECD were at increased risk for the following malignancies: breast [OR: 1.32; 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.22-1.43; P < 0.001], cutaneous basal cell (OR: 1.42; 95% CI: 1.35-1.49; P < 0.001), cutaneous melanoma (OR: 1.20; 95% CI: 1.03-1.40; P = 0.02), cutaneous squamous cell (OR: 1.45; 95% CI: 1.38-1.53; P < 0.001), ovarian (OR: 1.84; 95% CI: 1.48-2.30; P < 0.001), and thyroid (OR: 1.32; 95% CI: 1.04-1.68; P = 0.02). By contrast, FECD cases were at lower odds of having lung (OR: 0.81; 95% CI: 0.71-0.93; P = 0.003) and prostate cancer diagnoses (OR: 0.88; 95% CI: 0.81-0.96; P = 0.002).Conclusions:Patients with FECD aged 65 years or older may be at increased risk for cancer at several anatomic locations. Follow-up studies are needed to further explore the association of FECD and malignancy, elucidate potential disease mechanisms, and identify genetic and/or environmental risk factors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1088-1093
Number of pages6
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1 2022


  • Fuchs endothelial corneal dystrophy
  • cancer
  • odds ratio

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology


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