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D B Elliott, M Trukolo-Ilic, J G Strong, R Pace, A Plotkin, P Bevers; Demographic characteristics of the vision-disabled elderly.. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 1997;38(12):2566-2575. doi: https://doi.org/.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
PURPOSE: To profile certain demographic features of the low-vision population in Ontario, Canada. METHODS: Sixty-six optometrists or optometry centers, 8 ophthalmologists, and 23 Canadian National Institute for the Blind rehabilitation worker teams were recruited to the study. They were required to report on their low-vision examinations during a 3-year period. RESULTS: Reports from 4744 low-vision examinations were received. Of the patients examined, 71% were over age 65 (subsequently called seniors or elderly), and 55% were over age 75. Ninety percent of all the patients lived in households and 10% lived in institutions. Seniors made up 71% of the patients living in households and 88% of the patients living in institutions. Most of the seniors were women (65%), and 57% had functional limitations in addition to low vision, most commonly limitations in mobility, hearing, or agility. Age-related maculopathy was the primary diagnosis in 75% of seniors, and the most common secondary diagnosis was cataract (46%). The main objective for most elderly low-vision patients was to gain improvement in personal reading (75%). CONCLUSIONS: The vast majority of low-vision patients were elderly, the largest number being 75 to 84 years old. When older senior low-vision patients (> or = 85 years) were compared with younger seniors (65 to 74 years), the older seniors were more likely to be women, more likely to have additional functional limitations, more likely to live in an institution, and more likely to have age-related maculopathy and cataract. Whether some elderly low-vision patients may be helped by cataract surgery needs to be determined.
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