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Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2007 Mar;48(3):1149-55.

Risk of falls and motor vehicle collisions in glaucoma.

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Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Canada.



To investigate the risk of falls and motor vehicle collisions (MVCs) in patients with glaucoma.


The sample comprised 48 patients with glaucoma (mean visual field mean deviation [MD] in the better eye = -3.9 dB; 5.1 dB SD) and 47 age-matched normal control subjects, who were recruited from a university-based hospital eye care clinic and are enrolled in an ongoing prospective study of risk factors for falls, risk factors for MVCs, and on-road driving performance in glaucoma. Main outcome measures at baseline were previous self-reported falls and MVCs, and police-reported MVCs. Demographic and medical data were obtained. In addition, functional independence in daily living, physical activity level and balance were assessed. Clinical vision measures included visual acuity, contrast sensitivity, standard automated perimetry, useful field of view (UFOV), and stereopsis. Analyses of falls and MVCs were adjusted to account for the possible confounding effects of demographic characteristics, medications, and visual field impairment. MVC analyses were also adjusted for kilometers driven per week.


There were no significant differences between patients with glaucoma and control subjects with respect to number of systemic medical conditions, body mass index, functional independence, and physical activity level (P > 0.10). At baseline, 40 (83%) patients with glaucoma and 44 (94%) control subjects were driving. Compared with control subjects, patients with glaucoma were over three times more likely to have fallen in the previous year (odds ratio [OR](adjusted) = 3.71; 95% CI, 1.14-12.05), over six times more likely to have been involved in one or more MVCs in the previous 5 years (OR(adjusted) = 6.62; 95% CI, 1.40-31.23), and more likely to have been at fault (OR(adjusted) = 12.44; 95% CI, 1.08-143.99). The strongest risk factor for MVCs in patients with glaucoma was impaired UFOV selective attention (OR(adjusted) = 10.29; 95% CI, 1.10-96.62; for selective attention >350 ms compared with </=350 ms).


There is an increased risk of falls and MVCs in patients with glaucoma.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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