Age-related sensory impairments affect many older adults. Yet, there is little information about the frequency of multiple sensory impairments among older people; the excess risk, if any, of sensory co-morbidity; or the functional impact of multiple impairments. As part of the 5-yr follow-up phase of the Epidemiology of Hearing Loss Study, the prevalence of age-related sensory impairments is being in measured in a population-based cohort of older adults in Beaver Dam, WI. Participants (n=3571) were ages 48-92 years at the baseline examination. The five-yr follow-up examination phase will be completed in June of 2000. Multiple measures of vision, hearing and olfaction function are being collected in this cohort. Performance-based measures include visual acuity (binocular with current correction, monocular with best correction and near), contrast sensitivity, audiometry, word recognition in quiet and competing message, and the San Diego Odor Identification Test. Self-assessed vision, hearing and olfaction function are also ascertained. Preliminary data suggest that over 30% of adults over the age of 65 years have more than one sensory impairment. Data will be presented to illustrate methodological issues important when assessing excess risk of sensory co-morbidity, risk factor associations, and the impact of sensory co-morbidity on overall function and quality of life in epidemiologic studies.
Learning Objectives: N/A
Keywords: Aging, Epidemiology
Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Organization/institution whose products or services will be discussed: None
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.
The 128th Annual Meeting of APHA