Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

For many older adults, vision prescription differs between eyes

Date:
November 26, 2013
Source:
Wolters Kluwer Health: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins
Summary:
Follow-up in older adults shows a high rate of anisometropia, or differing levels of visual abnormalities between eyes, reports a study.

Follow-up in older adults shows a high rate of anisometropia, or differing levels of visual abnormalities between eyes, reports a study in Optometry and Vision Science, official journal of the American Academy of Optometry. The journal is published by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, a part of Wolters Kluwer Health.

Related Articles


"Uncorrected anisometropia is likely to lead to disturbances in binocular vision and stereopsis, which in turn may contribute to falls in the elderly," concludes the new research, led by Gunilla Haegerstrom-Portnoy, OD, PhD, FAAO, of University of California, Berkeley. They emphasize the importance of appropriate vision correction in both eyes for older adults -- especially at more advanced ages.

Study Confirms Increased Anisometropia with Aging

The researchers analyzed vision examination results in 118 older adults followed up over 12 years -- from an average age of 67 to 79 years at the end of the study. The study focused on the development of anisometropia, defined as a significant difference (one diopter or more) in prescription (refractive error) between the two eyes in one of four components.

During the study period, the prevalence of anisometropia increased significantly. For each of the four prescription components, the prevalence of anisometropia approximately doubled. As the participants approached 80 years of age, 32 percent met the study definition of anisometropia.

The differences in prescription components provided some clues to the causes of aging-related anisometropia. Most cases were related to differing degrees of farsightedness (hyperopia) between eyes. Others were caused by early but unequal blurring of the lens of the eye -- even though none of the older adults in the study had eye lenses that met the usual clinical definition of cataracts.

Within the age range studied, differences between eyes could begin to occur anytime, with no particular preference for any one age. In a few patients, anisometropia actually decreased during the study.

Need for Proper Correction in Both Eyes

Previous studies, based on cross-sectional (one-time) measurements, have suggested that the rate of anisometropia increases exponentially with aging. However, these studies provide no information on how the visual mismatch develops over time, or the specific refractive error components involved.

Dr Haegerstrom-Portnoy and coauthors cite previous studies showing that the prevalence of anisometropia in children is only two to four percent. They write, "Whatever the cause of the increase in anisometropia with aging, the fact that significant anisometropia is at least ten times more common in those over 75 years of age than in children needs to be clearly emphasized to clinicians."

Anthony Adams, OD, PhD, Editor-in-Chief of Optometry and Vision Science, comments: "For older people a lack of correction of this prescription difference between the eyes may contribute to the increased frequency of falls that, in turn, can have a severe impact on health and even life expectancy." Under current American Academy of Optometry guidelines, people over age 65 are considered a high-risk group, for whom visual examination and screening are recommended at least every two years.

Dr Adams raises special concern over the frequent use of "over-the-counter drugstore reading glasses" by older adults. He adds, "These 'dime store readers' are made to be generic, with identical focusing or magnification power in each eye -- certainly not an ideal solution for at least 30 percent of the over-age-75 population who have differing visual requirements between eyes."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Wolters Kluwer Health: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Gunilla Haegerstrom-Portnoy, Marilyn E. Schneck, Lori A. Lott, Susan E. Hewlett, John A. Brabyn. Longitudinal Increase in Anisometropia in Older Adults. Optometry and Vision Science, 2013; 1 DOI: 10.1097/OPX.0000000000000114

Cite This Page:

Wolters Kluwer Health: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. "For many older adults, vision prescription differs between eyes." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 26 November 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/11/131126155834.htm>.
Wolters Kluwer Health: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. (2013, November 26). For many older adults, vision prescription differs between eyes. ScienceDaily. Retrieved February 1, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/11/131126155834.htm
Wolters Kluwer Health: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. "For many older adults, vision prescription differs between eyes." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/11/131126155834.htm (accessed February 1, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Hikers Rescued After Fall from Oregon Mountain

Hikers Rescued After Fall from Oregon Mountain

AP (Feb. 1, 2015) Two climbers who were hurt in a fall on Mount Hood are now being treated for their injuries. Rescue officials say they were airlifted off the mountain Saturday afternoon by an Oregon National Guard helicopter. (Feb. 2) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Smart Glasses Augment Reality to Help Visually Impaired

Smart Glasses Augment Reality to Help Visually Impaired

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Feb. 1, 2015) New augmented reality smart glasses developed by researchers at Oxford University can help people with visual impairments improve their vision by providing depth-based feedback, allowing users to "see" better. Joel Flynn reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Flu Season Hitting Elderly Hard

Flu Season Hitting Elderly Hard

Reuters - US Online Video (Jan. 31, 2015) The CDC says this year&apos;s flu season is hitting people 65 years of age and older especially hard. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
CDC: Get Vaccinated for Measles

CDC: Get Vaccinated for Measles

Reuters - US Online Video (Jan. 30, 2015) The CDC is urging people to get vaccinated for measles amid an outbreak that began at Disneyland and has now infected more than 90 people. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins