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Type: Journal article
Title: Prevalence and causes of blindness in the South Australian population aged 50 and over
Author: Newland, H.
Hiller, J.
Casson, R.
Obermeder, S.
Citation: Ophthalmic Epidemiology, 1996; 3(2):97-107
Publisher: Swets and Zeitlinger
Issue Date: 1996
ISSN: 0928-6586
Statement of
H. S. Newland, J. E. Hiller, R. J. Casson, S. Obermeder
Abstract: Purpose to conduct a population based study examining the prevalence and causes of blindness and visual impairment in the South Australian population aged 50 and over. METHODS A random stratified cluster sample of 2115 persons was recruited from geographically exhaustive local government areas within South Australia. All participants underwent distance visual acuity measurements. In those participants with corrected visual acuity < 6/18 in the better eye a cause was determined. RESULTS Cataract and macular degeneration were the most common causes of monocular and binocular blindness. The prevalence of monocular and binocular blindness in South Australia in the population aged 50 and over is calculated to be approximately 3.7% and 1.3%, respectively. These rates increase significantly in the elderly (70 years of age and over) subgroups. CONCLUSIONS Degenerative conditions are the principal causes of visual impairment in South Australia. The number of visually impaired persons in South Australia is likely to increase over the coming decades. Accurate data are essential in order to optimise the use of limited resources.
Keywords: Blindness; visual impairment; cataract; macular degeneration; population based survey; age-related eye disease; Australia
Rights: © AEolus Press
DOI: 10.3109/09286589609080114
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