Purchase this article with an account.
H. M. Boisjoly, E. E. Freeman, F. Djafari, M. J. Aubin, R. Bruen, S. Couture, J. Gresset; Comparison of Patients Presenting for Cataract Surgery in 1999 versus 2006 in Montreal, Quebec. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2008;49(13):1921. doi: https://doi.org/.
Download citation file:
© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
In 2004, the governments of Canada enacted legislation to reduce cataract surgery wait times. In addition, cataract surgery techniques have changed since 1999 allowing for faster surgeries. The goals of this analysis were to compare the pre-surgery vision and health characteristics of cataract patients from a cohort recruited in 1999-2000 to a second cohort in 2006-2007.
Patients awaiting cataract surgery were recruited from Maisonneuve-Rosemont Hospital in Montreal, Quebec from 1999-00 (n=509) and a second cohort from 2006-07 (n=163). About two weeks before surgery, patients completed an interviewer-administered questionnaire. Date of entry onto the hospital waiting list and date of cataract surgery were recorded. Best-corrected visual acuity was measured in each eye using an ETDRS acuity chart and was converted to logMAR. The 5-item Cataract Symptom Scale (CSS5) (possible range 0-15), SF-36 (possible ranges 0-100), VF-14 (possible range 0-100), and 30-item Geriatric Depression Scale (GDS) (possible range 0-30) were given. Patients were asked about systemic and ocular comorbidities. Wilcoxon rank sum tests were used to test for differences between study 1 and study 2 scores.
From 1999 to 2006, the cataract surgical rate increased 59% while the median wait time decreased 23%. Patients in the 2006-07 cohort had better visual function in the eye to be operated on compared to the 1999-00 cohort. In the first cohort, the median visual acuity was 0.4 logMAR (Snellen 6/15), the median VF-14 score was 66, and the median CSS5 score was 6. In the second cohort, the median visual acuity was 0.3 logMAR (Snellen 6/12), the median VF-14 score was 81, and the median CSS5 score was 3. These differences were statistically significant (p<0.001). Patients in the second cohort also had better mean SF-36 social scores (84 vs 80, p=0.021). Age, gender, number of comorbidities, and GDS scores did not significantly differ between the two cohorts.
Patients are presenting for cataract surgery with less acuity loss, cataract symptoms, and reported visual difficulty than before. Legislative changes to reduce cataract surgery wait times and techniques to improve surgical efficiency seem to have benefited cataract patients by allowing physicians to treat them sooner in the disease process.
This PDF is available to Subscribers Only