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Association of Visual Impairment with Mobility and Physical Function

Association of Visual Impairment with Mobility and Physical Function Objective To examine the association of distant vision and physical function in the population of older adults. Design Cross‐sectional and cohort study. Participants 5143 older residents of three communities (Established Populations for the Epidemiologic Studies of the Elderly) who were interviewed in 1988–89, including residents of two communities who were re‐interviewed 15 months later (n = 3133, 97% of those eligible). Measures Visual acuity screening, self‐reported activities of daily living and mobility, and objective physical performance measures of balance, walking, and rising from a chair. Results Limitations in mobility, activities of daily living, and physical performance were associated with worse visual function. In prospective analyses controlling for potential confounders, participants with severe visual impairment had 3‐fold higher odds of incident mobility and activity of daily living limitations than those with acuity of 20/40 or better (P < 0.001). In prospective analyses investigating the relationship of vision with improvement in function, those with poor vision were about half as likely to improve as those with better acuity, but this relationship was only statistically significant for improvement in mobility limitations. Conclusions Distant visual function appears to play an important role in physical function, particularly for mobility. An intervention to improve vision in at‐risk elders might preserve function and prevent disability; this warrants further investigation. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of American Geriatrics Society Wiley

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References (35)

Publisher
Wiley
Copyright
© The American Geriatrics Society
ISSN
0002-8614
eISSN
1532-5415
DOI
10.1111/j.1532-5415.1994.tb01753.x
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Objective To examine the association of distant vision and physical function in the population of older adults. Design Cross‐sectional and cohort study. Participants 5143 older residents of three communities (Established Populations for the Epidemiologic Studies of the Elderly) who were interviewed in 1988–89, including residents of two communities who were re‐interviewed 15 months later (n = 3133, 97% of those eligible). Measures Visual acuity screening, self‐reported activities of daily living and mobility, and objective physical performance measures of balance, walking, and rising from a chair. Results Limitations in mobility, activities of daily living, and physical performance were associated with worse visual function. In prospective analyses controlling for potential confounders, participants with severe visual impairment had 3‐fold higher odds of incident mobility and activity of daily living limitations than those with acuity of 20/40 or better (P < 0.001). In prospective analyses investigating the relationship of vision with improvement in function, those with poor vision were about half as likely to improve as those with better acuity, but this relationship was only statistically significant for improvement in mobility limitations. Conclusions Distant visual function appears to play an important role in physical function, particularly for mobility. An intervention to improve vision in at‐risk elders might preserve function and prevent disability; this warrants further investigation.

Journal

Journal of American Geriatrics SocietyWiley

Published: Mar 1, 1994

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