The Association of Health-Related Quality of Life with Severity of Visual Impairment among People Aged 40-64 Years: Findings from the 2006-2010 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System

  • The purpose of the study is to examine the association of health-related quality of life (HRQoL) with severity of visual impairment among people aged 40–64 years.

  • The study used cross-sectional data from the 2006–2010 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System to examine six measures of HRQoL: self-reported health, physically unhealthy days, mentally unhealthy days, activity limitation days, life satisfaction, and disability.

  • Visual impairment was categorized as no, a little, or moderate/severe. The study examined the association between visual impairment and HRQoL using logistic regression accounting for the survey’s complex design.

  • Overall, 23.0% of the participants reported a little difficult seeing, while 16.8% reported moderate/severe difficulty seeing.

  • People aged 40–64 years with moderate/severe visual impairment had more frequent (≥14) physically unhealthy days, mentally unhealthy days, and activity limitation days in the last 30 days, as well as greater life dissatisfaction, greater disability, and poorer health compared to people reporting no or a little visual impairment.

  • After controlling for covariates (age, sex, marital status, race/ethnicity, education, income, state, year, health insurance, heart disease, stroke, heart attack, body mass index, leisure-time activity, smoking, and medical care costs), and compared to people with no visual impairment, those with moderate/severe visual impairment were more likely to have fair/poor health (odds ratio, OR, 2.01, 95% confidence interval, CI, 1.82–2.23), life dissatisfaction (OR 2.06, 95% CI 1.80–2.35), disability (OR 1.95, 95% CI 1.80–2.13), and frequent physically unhealthy days (OR 1.69, 95% CI 1.52–1.88), mentally unhealthy days (OR 1.84, 95% CI 1.66–2.05), and activity limitation days (OR 1.94, 95% CI 1.71–2.20; all p < 0.0001).

  • The report concluded that poor HRQoL was strongly associated with moderate/severe visual impairment among people aged 40–64 years.

Publication date

January 15, 2019


Ophthalmic Epidemiology

Sponsor Institution

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention


Crews JE, Chou CF, Zack MM, Zhang X, Bullard KM, Morse AR, Saaddine JB.
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