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J Am Geriatr Soc. 1993 Apr;41(4):401-7.

Sensory impairment and quality of life in a community elderly population.

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1
Geriatric Research Group, Brescia, Italy.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To determine the association between quality of life measures and sensory impairment in aged individuals living at home.

DESIGN:

Survey

SETTING:

A community survey, carried out in the historical center of a town in Northern Italy.

PATIENTS:

1191 non-institutionalized elders (age 70-75 years).

MEASUREMENTS:

Comprehensive QOL questionnaire, free-field voice testing, and Snellen eye chart.

RESULTS:

Single sensory impairments (either visual or auditory) were significantly and independently associated with increased risk for depression (odds ratio: 2.3, 95% confidence interval: 1.5-3.4; OR:1.8, CI:1.1-2.7, respectively) and decreased self-sufficiency in daily living activities (OR:1.7, CI:1.1-2.6; OR:2.1, CI:1.4-3.2, respectively). Visual dysfunction, but not hearing dysfunction, was independently associated with lower social relationships (OR:2.0, CI:1.3-3.1).

CONCLUSION:

The quality of life of community-dwelling elderly people is significantly linked to sensory impairment, which can be detected through simple physical examination. Mood level and social relationships are particularly affected by visual impairment, whereas self-sufficiency in daily living is more strongly related to hearing impairment.

PMID:
8463527
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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