-Dr. Kathy Johnson, PhD, CMC
A new study describes a major concern of senior citizens falling because of reduced central and side vision. According to statistics from the journal of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, 35 to 40 percent of people who are healthy and independent above the age of 65 will fall each year, 18 percent leading to medical assistance.
After examining this statistic, the article describes a further experiment conducted by the Los Angeles Eye Study (LALES) that shows the independent effects of central and peripheral vision impairments. After 3,200 participants and 8 years of study, this data correlated: the worse the visions, the higher the number of falls and injuries. Initially, it has been scientifically proven that senior citizens’ ability to see clearly in front of them is reduced due to age-related macular degeneration, but now the issue with peripheral vision is making its way into the laboratories.
The results found that people with central vision impairment were at 2.8 times higher risk for falls with injury than those with no vision impairment. And those with peripheral vision impairment were at 1.4 times higher the risk. Researcher Rohit Varma, MD, MPH, suggests that both visions need to be treated and taken care of in order to help seniors decrease their risk of falling.
The American Academy of Opthalmology is accordingly the world’s largest association of eye physicians and surgeons with over 27,000 clients. One step at a time, they are looking for more ways to help improve the performance of eye sight and more.