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Jill Keeffe, Jost B Jonas, Rupert Bourne, Tien Y Wong, Janet L Leasher, Kovin Shunmugam Naidoo, Holly Price, Seth R Flaxman, Serge Resnikoff, Hugh R Taylor, Global Burden of Disease Vision Loss Expert Group; Vision Impairment and Blindness due to Age-Related and other Macular Degenerations Globally: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2014;55(13):6083.
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To estimate the prevalence and number of people vision impaired or blind due to age-related (AMD) and other macular degenerations (MD)
Based on the Global Burden of Disease Study 2010 and an ongoing literature search, we estimated how many people were affected by moderate and severe vision impairment (MSVI; presenting visual acuity <6/18, ≥3/60) and blindness (presenting visual acuity <3/60) due to MD. Change between 1990 and 2010 was calculated.
In 2010, out of a total of 32.4 million blind and 191 million vision impaired, 2.1 million (95% uncertainty intervals (UI): 1.9, 2.7) people were blind, and 6.0 million (UI: 5.2, 8.1) million were visually impaired due to macular degeneration. MD caused worldwide 6.6% (UI: 6.0, 7.9) of all blindness in 2010 and 3.1% (UI: 2.7, 4.0) of all MSVI. These proportions were lower in regions with younger populations (<3% in South Asia) than in high-income regions with relatively old populations (>15%). From 1990 to 2010, the number of people blind or MSVI due to MD increased by 0.6 million people (UI: 0.5, 0.8) or 36% and by 2.7 million (UI: 2.6, 3.9) people or 81%, respectively. Age-standardized global prevalence of MD related blindness in adults aged 50+ years decreased from 0.2% (UI: 0.2, 0.2) in 1990 to 0.1% (UI: 0.1, 0.2) in 2010, and MSVI remained unchanged at 0.4% (UI: 0.3,0.5 in 1990 and UI: 0.4, 0.6 in 2010). The percentage of global blindness and MSVI caused by MD increased from 4.9% (UI: 4.4, 5.8) to 6.6%, and from 1.9% (UI: 1.6, 2.4) to 3.1%, respectively. This increase took place in most world regions, except Western Europe and high-income North America with stable figures. MD caused 7.3% (UI: 6.4, 8.9%) of blindness among women vs. 5.5% (UI: 4.8, 6.8%) of blindness among men. One out 15 people are blind and one out of 32 people with MSVI have vision loss due to MD.
In 2010 the prevalence of blindness was lower and MSVI stable compared to rates in 1990 but the numbers of people were higher with increases of 36% and 81% for blindness and MSVI respectively. The lower or stable prevalence of MD blindness and MSVI may be due to the therapeutic success of intra-vitreal medications whilst the higher numbers due to the increase in life expectancy over the period. The percentage of blindness and MSVI from MD was higher in high-income regions with relatively older populations.
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