To investigate the association between long-term regular exercise (exercise frequency and exercise time) and 5-year changes in intraocular pressure in a general Japanese population.
This population-based, cohort study was conducted in 2007. A total of 3119 Japanese community dwellers aged ≥ 40 years underwent eye examinations including intraocular pressure measurement with a noncontact tonometer. Of these, 1871 subjects (801 men and 1070 women) who underwent intraocular pressure measurement in 2012 participated. We assessed the associations of exercise frequency and exercise time with intraocular pressure using a linear regression model, adjusted for age and possible risk factors that can affect intraocular pressure.
The mean 5-year intraocular pressure change ± standard deviation was - 0.84 ± 1.9 mmHg. After adjustment for age, sex, systolic blood pressure, diabetes, total cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, body mass index, waist circumference, smoking habit, alcohol intake, work intensity levels, and intraocular pressure at baseline, we observed that increased exercise frequency (times/week) and increased exercise time (min/week) were both significantly associated with reduced intraocular pressure (p < 0.05 each). In the subgroup analyses based on the presence/absence of possible confounding risk factors, there was no evidence of heterogeneity among all subgroups (p for heterogeneity > 0.2).
Increased exercise frequency levels and increased exercise time are both independently associated with reduced intraocular pressure levels after adjustment for confounding factors.