Prevalence and Associated Factors of Uncorrected Refractive Error in Older Adults in a Population-Based Study in France

  • Uncorrected refractive error (URE) is a common cause of visual impairment, but its prevalence in groups of older adults who could be pragmatic targets for improving optical correction remains unknown.

  • The study aims to estimate the prevalence of URE in older adults, particularly in those with age-related eye disease and those who are unable to attend an outpatient clinic, and to identify the factors associated with URE.

  • The population-based cross-sectional analysis included 707 adults 78 years or older from the Alienor Study in Bordeaux, France.

  • Uncorrected refractive error was defined as the presenting distance visual acuity in the better-seeing eye improved by at least 5 letters on the Early Treatment Diabetic Retinopathy Study chart (≥1 line on the logMAR chart) using the best-achieved optical correction. Multivariate logistic regressions were used to determine the factors associated with URE.

  • These study results show that the prevalence of URE was high in this population and suggest that preventive strategies aimed at enhancing optical correction could be directed to all older adults and to specific groups by implementing at-home eye examinations for those who have difficulties attending an outpatient clinic and by focusing on those with eye disease who probably already have a regular ophthalmologic follow-up.

  • More studies are needed to evaluate prevalence of URE in different populations and countries with various eye care systems.

Publication date

November 13, 2018


JAMA Ophthalmol


Virginie Naël, Gwendoline Moreau, Solène Monfermé, Audrey Cougnard-Grégoire, Anne-Catherine Scherlen, Angelo Arleo, Jean-François Korobelnik, Cécile Delcourt, Catherine Helmer
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