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‘Both Eye’ Cataract Patients May Experience Less Falls and Injuries

August 21, 2012

Brand new study shows that cataract surgery in both eyes gives the best results.

Earlier this month, we shared a blog post about a study which suggested that elderly individuals who have cataract surgery in one eye are much less likely to have dangerous falls and hip fractures (usually caused by poor vision).

“Vision impairment is a large influencer over poor depth perception and contrast sensitivity, and we often rely on our vision quite a lot to help balance ourselves. Therefore, when our vision quality starts to decrease as we get older―usually due to the onset of cataracts which are a common occurrence as we enter our senior years―our eyesight can actually play a part in accidents and injuries such as hip fractures, which are very common in elderly individuals.”

-Senior Vision Article: Can Cataracts Lead To Hip Fractures In Seniors?

However, an even more recent study that was published on July 31, 2012 is now reporting that the results of this particular experiment could have been flawed due to the fact that most people who participated in the study had only undergone cataract surgery in the first eye, rather than waiting the six months of recovery time that was needed before most people’s second eye had been treated.

This is extremely significant because having cataract surgery in just one eye could be a large factor in the risk of falling after surgery. This is because your vision essentially becomes lopsided, with one eye much clearer and more focused than the other following surgery. Therefore, your eyes have a hard time adjusting to dimensions and depth in the way that they usually would.

Loss in stability following single cataract surgery could also be caused by wearing old glasses and having poor vision in the corrected eye because of the glasses, and poor vision in the other eye due to cataract, according to Lynn B. Meuleners, of Curtin University in Perth, Australia, who led the new study. Therefore, you may want to speak with your eye care doctor to determine whether or not ‘both eye’ cataract surgery may be the smartest option for you when it comes to healthy vision and staying stable.

After all, bone fractures and the falls that often cause them are one of the major causes of disability and death among seniors. Many studies even project that fall-related injuries cost the United States more than $10 billion in health care costs. Given this shocking statistic, it is worth looking into the fact that vision-improving procedures such as cataract surgery may be just what we need to prevent falls or breaks in older adults.

This study confirms our long standing practice of treating bilateral cataracts within 1 to 2 weeks of each other.  For more information about the benefits of cataract surgery to seniors, be sure to contact OCLI today to learn more about the helpful procedure and get back on the track of health vision.


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