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January 2014 Connect with us Facebook Twitter Sign up  |  Archive  |  Advertise
Editor's e-Note
A recent study has identified among older adults a high incidence of anisometropia, or differing levels of visual abnormalities between the eyes. The aging-related condition, when left uncorrected, can lead not only to vision difficulties but also can contribute to falls in the elderly.

Elders over the age of 65 are considered to be at high risk of anisometropia and should be screened regularly to detect this vision discrepancy between their eyes. It’s critical to make the diagnosis and ensure correction for both eyes.

In addition to reading our e-newsletter, be sure to visit Today’s Geriatric Medicine’s website at, where you’ll find news and information that’s relevant and reliable. We welcome your feedback at Follow Today’s Geriatric Medicine on Facebook and Twitter, too.

— Barbara Worthington, editor
Field Notes
Vision Prescription Often Differs
Between Eyes

Follow-up in older adults shows a high rate of anisometropia, or differing levels of visual abnormalities between their eyes, according to a study in Optometry and Vision Science.

“Uncorrected anisometropia is likely to lead to disturbances in binocular vision and stereopsis, which in turn may contribute to falls in the elderly,” concludes the new research, led by Gunilla Haegerstrom-Portnoy, OD, PhD, FAAO, of the University of California, Berkeley. Researchers emphasize the importance of appropriate vision correction in both eyes for older adults, especially at more advanced ages.

The researchers analyzed vision examination results in 118 older adults followed for more than 12 years, from an average age of 67 to 79 at the end of the study. The study focused on the development of anisometropia, defined as a significant difference (one diopter or more) in prescription (refractive error) between the two eyes in one of four components.

During the study period, the prevalence of anisometropia increased significantly. For each of the four prescription components, the prevalence of anisometropia approximately doubled. As the participants approached the age of 80, 32% met the study definition of anisometropia.

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