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J Am Geriatr Soc. 2018 Oct;66(10):1934-1939. doi: 10.1111/jgs.15490. Epub 2018 Aug 22.

Interaction Between Visual Acuity and Peripheral Vascular Disease with Balance.

Author information

1
Health Sciences, Lakehead University, Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada.
2
Department of Ophthalmology, Université de Montréal, Montreal, Canada.
3
Maisonneuve-Rosemont Hospital Research Centre, Montreal, Canada.
4
Department of Ophthalmology, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Canada.
5
Centre de Recherche, Institut Universitaire de Gériatrie de Montréal, Montreal, Canada.
6
Department of Medicine, Université de Montréal, Montreal, Canada.
7
School of Epidemiology and Public Health, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Canada.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

To determine whether visual acuity is related to balance in older adults with peripheral vascular disease (PVD) or diabetes mellitus.

DESIGN:

Cross-sectional analysis.

SETTING:

Canada.

PARTICIPANTS:

Community-dwelling adults aged 45 to 85 from the Canadian Longitudinal Study on Aging (N=30,097).

MEASUREMENTS:

Visual acuity was measured wearing habitual distance correction using the Early Treatment of Diabetic Retinopathy Study chart at a 2-m distance. Poor balance was defined as being unable to stand on 1 leg for at least 60 seconds. PVD and diabetes mellitus were assessed according to self-report of a physician diagnosis. Multiple logistic regression was used.

RESULTS:

People who reported PVD (n=1,295) were more likely to have worse balance than those who did not (odds ratio (OR)=1.50, 95% confidence interval (CI)=1.29-1.77). In those who did not report PVD (n=26,211), a 1-line worse score on the visual acuity test was associated with 23% higher odds of being unable to stand for at least 60 seconds after adjusting for age, sex, education, province, body mass index, and diabetes mellitus (OR=1.23, 95% CI=1.20-1.26). In those who reported PVD, the odds of being unable to stand was almost double (OR=1.41, 95% CI=1.22-1.62). The interaction between visual acuity and PVD was statistically significant (P=.02).

CONCLUSIONS:

Visual acuity and PVD interact in their relationship with balance. People with poor vision and PVD may be at an especially high risk of mobility difficulties.

KEYWORDS:

CLSA; peripheral arterial disease; proprioception; vision

PMID:
30136286
DOI:
10.1111/jgs.15490

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