Online Program

Impairment of visual acuity and cognitive function details in elderly hispanics: Results from the hispanic established population for epidemiological study of the elderly (HEPESE), Wave 6, 2006-2007

Tuesday, November 3, 2015 : 12:50 p.m. - 1:10 p.m.

Malinee Neelamegam, B.Biomed Sc, MBA, MPH, Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, College of Public Health, University of South Florida, Tampa, FL
Sharad Malavade, MD, DNB (Ophth.) MPH, PhD, Brandon Regional Hospital, Brandon, FL
Background: Visual impairment is common in the elderly population. Studies have reported the association between global cognitive impairment and reduced visual acuity. Our study determined if impairment of visual acuity is associated with specific cognitive function domains in elderly Hispanics.

Methods: Data of 1,542 individuals aged 75 years and above, participating in Wave 6 of the Hispanic Established Populations for the Epidemiologic Study of the Elderly (HEPESE) were analyzed. Scores in seven domains of the Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE) were constructed by contrasting a perfect score with any error. Association with self-­reported impairment of visual acuity was assessed using logistic regression and adjusting for gender, age, education, marital status, depression, global health rating, previous stroke, and ADL scores.

Results: Mean age of participants was 83.4 ± 4.8 years, 62.6% (n=965) were females, 38.3% (n=590) were married and 80.4% (n=1237) had 8 or less years of formal education. Mean MMSE score of participants was 20.0 ± 9.0. Individuals with impaired distant vision were more likely to have impaired performance in the cognitive domains of orientation to place (OR 2.01; 95% CI 1.32-3.06, p<0.01), orientation to time (OR 2.58; 95% CI 1.78-3.72, p<0.001), word registration (OR 2.12; 95% CI 1.35-3.33, p<0.05) and recall (OR 1.99; 95% CI 1.30-3.02, p<0.05). Near vision impairment was associated only with impaired performance in the cognitive domain of language (OR 2.10; 95% CI 1.38-4.45, p<0.05).

Conclusion: Near and distant vision impairments are associated with different domain specific cognitive impairment in the elderly.

Learning Areas:

Chronic disease management and prevention

Learning Objectives:
Describe the association between impairment of visual acuity and domain specific cognitive function in the elderly.

Keyword(s): Aging, Public Health Research

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a doctoral student majoring in neuro-epidemiology. I conceptualized this study and conducted the data analysis. I have worked on multiple epidemiological studies on neurological disorders in the elderly population.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.