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The aging eye

  • John J Ah-Chan (a1) and Susan Downes (a1)

Abstract

Age has been identified as the single most impor-tant demographic predictor of blindness and visual impairment. Visual impairment is the second most prevalent physical disability in the elderly population. The prevalence of blindness and visual impairment after 60 years of age increases significantly. Furthermore, the number of older people with functional vision impairment is expected to double in the next decade. Visual impairment in the elderly population is commonly due either to localized ocular pathology (cataracts, glaucoma and age-related macular degeneration) or systemic disease with associated ocular or visual pathway involvement (hypertension, diabetes and cerebrovascular disease). Physicians involved in the care of older people play a crucial role in the recognition, prevention and management of morbidity related to visual impairment in this population. Timely screening, referral, intervention and visual rehabilitation is thought to be capable of reducing new blindness and visual impairment by at least one-third.

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Corresponding author

Address for correspondence: SM Downes, Oxford Eye Hospital, Radcliffe Infirmary, Woodstock Road, Oxford, OX2 6HE, UK.

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The aging eye

  • John J Ah-Chan (a1) and Susan Downes (a1)

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