Author(s):Klein BE,Klein R, Jensen SC. Visual sensitivity and age-related eye diseases. The Beaver Dam Eye Study. Ophthalmic Epidemiol. 1996 Mar;3(1):47-55.
Journal: Ophthalmic Epidemiology, Volume 3, Issue 1, Mar 1996
OBJECTIVE To evaluate the relationships between visual sensitivity and age-related ocular disorders.
DESIGN Prevalence survey of age-related eye diseases.
SETTING Beaver Dam, Wisconsin.
PARTICIPANTS A total community sample of persons 43-84 at the time of the census (1987-1988) was invited to participate (n = 5.926).
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE Visual sensitivity was measured by a perimeter. Sensitivities were evaluated with regard to age, sex and age-related eye diseases.
RESULTS Sensitivity was inversely associated with age and was lower in women in each age stratum. Central cataract, cataract surgery, and late age-related maculopathy were significantly related to decreased sensitivity in multivariate analyses.
CONCLUSIONS Visual sensitivity, an indication of the ability of the eye to detect a light stimulus, was diminished in those with central cataract, cataract surgery, and late age-related maculopathy. This may be related to diminished vision in environmental conditions of low illumination. Since visual sensitivity is relative easy to determine, this test may have use as a surrogate to assess functional vision loss. Also, although cataract surgery often leads to improved high contrast acuity, there may be a loss in low contrast settings.