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Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2015 Oct;56(11):6762-9. doi: 10.1167/iovs.15-17201.

Number of People Blind or Visually Impaired by Cataract Worldwide and in World Regions, 1990 to 2010.

Author information

1
Department of Ophthalmology, Fattouma Bourguiba University Hospital, Faculty of Medicine, University of Monastir, Monastir, Tunisia.
2
Vision and Eye Research Unit, Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge, United Kingdom.
3
Consultant public eye health, Health Information Services, Grootebroek, The Netherlands.
4
School of Computer Science and Heinz College, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States.
5
Department of Ophthalmology, Medical Faculty Mannheim, Heidelberg University, Mannheim, Germany.
6
Department of Ophthalmology, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia.
7
Nova Southeastern University, Fort Lauderdale, Florida, United States.
8
African Vision Research Institute, University of Kwazulu-Natal, South Africa and Brien Holden Vision Institute, Sydney, Australia.
9
NHMRC Centre for Clinical Eye Research, Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia.
10
Department of Genes and Environment, Division of Epidemiology, Norwegian Institute of Public Health, Oslo, Norway.
11
Singapore Eye Research Institute, Singapore.
12
Brien Holden Vision Institute, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia.
13
Melbourne School of Population and Global Health, University of Melbourne, Australia.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

To estimate prevalence and number of people visually impaired or blind due to cataract.

METHODS:

Based on the Global Burden of Diseases Study 2010 and ongoing literature research, we examined how many people were affected by moderate to severe vision impairment (MSVI; presenting visual acuity <6/18, ≥3/60) and blindness (presenting visual acuity <3/60) due to cataract.

RESULTS:

In 2010, of overall 32.4 million blind and 191 million vision impaired, 10.8 million people were blind and 35.1 million were visually impaired due to cataract. Cataract caused worldwide 33.4% of all blindness in 2010, and 18.4% of all MSVI. These figures were lower in the high-income regions (<15%) and higher (>40%) in South and Southeast Asia and Oceania. From 1990 to 2010, the number of blind or visually impaired due to cataract decreased by 11.4% and by 20.2%, respectively; the age-standardized global prevalence of cataract-related blindness and MSVI reduced by 46% and 50%, respectively, and the worldwide crude prevalence of cataract-related blindness and MSVI reduced by 32% and 39%, respectively. The percentage of global blindness and MSVI caused by cataract decreased from 38.6% to 33.4%, and from 25.6% to 18.4%, respectively. This decrease took place in almost all world regions, except East Sub-Saharan Africa.

CONCLUSIONS:

In 2010, one in three blind people was blind due to cataract, and one of six visually impaired people was visually impaired due to cataract. Despite major improvements in terms of reduction of prevalence, cataract remains a major public health problem.

PMID:
26567788
DOI:
10.1167/iovs.15-17201
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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