June 2022
Volume 63, Issue 7
Open Access
ARVO Annual Meeting Abstract  |   June 2022
Relationship between Severity and Laterality of Age-Related Sensory Decline and Frailty In Multi-ethnic Elderly Asians
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Ecosse Luc Lamoureux
    Singapore Eye Research Institute, Singapore, Singapore
    Duke-NUS Medical School, Singapore, Singapore
  • Ryan EK Man
    Singapore Eye Research Institute, Singapore, Singapore
    Duke-NUS Medical School, Singapore, Singapore
  • Alfred TL Gan
    Singapore Eye Research Institute, Singapore, Singapore
  • Eva K Fenwick
    Singapore Eye Research Institute, Singapore, Singapore
    Duke-NUS Medical School, Singapore, Singapore
  • Preeti Gupta
    Singapore Eye Research Institute, Singapore, Singapore
    Duke-NUS Medical School, Singapore, Singapore
  • Footnotes
    Commercial Relationships   Ecosse Lamoureux None; Ryan EK Man None; Alfred Gan None; Eva Fenwick None; Preeti Gupta None
  • Footnotes
    Support  NMRC/CSA- SI/0009/2016
Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science June 2022, Vol.63, 1829. doi:
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      Ecosse Luc Lamoureux, Ryan EK Man, Alfred TL Gan, Eva K Fenwick, Preeti Gupta; Relationship between Severity and Laterality of Age-Related Sensory Decline and Frailty In Multi-ethnic Elderly Asians. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2022;63(7):1829.

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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Abstract

Purpose : To investigate the relationship of the severity and laterality (i.e., unilateral or bilateral) of vision, hearing, and dual sensory impairments (VI, HI and DSI, respectively) with frailty in older Asians.

Methods : We included individuals from The PopulatION HEalth and Age-Related SEnsory Decline PRofilE (PIONEER), a population-based study of Singaporean Chinese, Malays, and Indians aged ≥60 years. Participants underwent visual acuity (VA) assessment using a LogMAR chart, and a hearing test using a portable audiometer at four frequencies (500, 1000, 2000, 4000 hertz). The Fried frailty phenotype was used to assess physical frailty, defined as meeting at least three out of five criteria comprising unintentional shrinking (BMI<18.5 kg/m2); slowness (≤0.8m/s on 4m-gait speed); weakness (handgrip strength <30 kg (men) and <20 kg (women)); exhaustion (measured using the vitality domain of the 12-item Short-form survey); and low self-reported physical activity. Any, mild and ≥ moderate VI was defined as presenting distance VA >0.3 logMAR; 0.3< VA ≤0.48 logMAR; and VA >0.48 logMAR, respectively; and any, mild and ≥ moderate HI as an average threshold of ≥40 dB, 40≤ hearing loss <60 dB; and hearing loss ≥60 dB, respectively.

Results : Of the 1,510 PIONEER adults (mean±SD age 72.1 ±7.9yr), 44.0%, 43.7% and 23.1% had any VI, HI and DSI, respectively. Of these, 34.0% had bilateral VI only; 64.7% had bilateral HI only, and 18.3% had DSI+ comprising (a) bilateral VI/HI and unilateral HI/VI; or (b) bilateral VI and bilateral HI). Notably, 33.9% of participants were frail. In multivariable-adjusted analyses, the presence of bilateral VI or HI (any severity) was independently associated with almost twice the odds of having frailty (odds ratio [OR]: 1.82, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.25, 2.44; for VI; OR: 1.84, 95% CI: 1.32, 2.57; for HI) compared to those with no sensory impairment. Critically, those with DSI+ had even higher odds of being frail (ORs between 2.15-3.35). Unilateral VI, HI and DSI (i.e., unilateral VI and HI) of any severity were not associated with frailty.

Conclusions : Elderly Singaporeans with bilateral VI or HI of any severity; and DSI comprising any bilateral impairment are at high risk of frailty. Strategies to prevent and delay progression to bilateral sensory losses are warranted to reduce frailty in our ageing society.

This abstract was presented at the 2022 ARVO Annual Meeting, held in Denver, CO, May 1-4, 2022, and virtually.

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