Survey uncovers key gaps in American's knowledge of eye health
In cooperation with a colleague, Lena Havstam Johansson also investigated the eyesight of nearly half (560) of these 70-year-olds, in several ways. They examined the study participants' central vision (the part we use when we watch TV or look at a painting, for example), their peripheral vision (the part that enables us to pick up what is going on outside our field of focus), and their ability to perceive contrasts (contrast sensitivity). In addition, every study participant's lens and retina were photographed to detect eye disease, if any.
Having glasses of incorrect power was equally common in men and women in the study but, in general, the men had slightly better eyesight than the women. This may be explained partly by the higher prevalence of cataract among women generally. This was confirmed in the present study: Just over 27 percent of the women had cataract, but only just over 19 percent of the men. Many respondents who proved to have cataract were already aware that they had this eye disease, while others learned of it when they had their eyes tested. The most common eye disease among the study participants examined was cataract (23.4%), followed by age-related macular degeneration (AMD, 4.7%) and glaucoma (4.3%), while 1.4% had diabetic retinopathy (retinal changes due to diabetes).
These and other findings of the present study were recently accepted for publication in the scientific journal Acta Ophthalmologica . The study forms part of the H70 population-based study of aging and its diseases that has been underway at the University of Gothenburg since the early 1970s. This H70 study provides a picture of the trends of life and health among ordinary 70-year-olds, and also scope for comparing what getting older has been like for different generations. Source:
University of Gothenburg Journal reference:
Johansson, L. H. et al . (2020) Vision‐related quality of life and visual function in a 70‐year‐old Swedish population. Acta Ophthalmologica . doi.org/10.1111/aos.14341
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