LONDON, August 2, 2015 /PRNewswire/ --
A leading eye hospital group highlights the trend for Britons to have cataract surgery at a younger age than ever before.
A new study by Optegra Eye Health Care[i] suggests a third of British adults (33 per cent) know someone who has been diagnosed and treated for cataracts in their 50s or 60s, an eye condition which has historically mainly been treated in the over 70s.
Leading ophthalmic surgeon, Anne Gilvarry, at Optegra Eye Health Care states: "Ten years ago, if I had seen someone in their 50s who had cataracts, I would have been really concerned, ordering extra scans and blood tests. But now, I regularly see such patients!"
In fact almost a fifth (16 per cent) of enquiries to Optegra regarding cataract are now from people in their 40s and 50s.
It is believed causes may be the impact of UV, trauma, diabetes, other eye problems such as short sightedness and vitrectomy surgery.
Academic studies[ii] reveal the majority (88 per cent) of people with treatable visual impairment from cataract were not in touch with eye health services, capturing a high level of potentially unmet need. It is estimated that 225,000 new cases of visually impairing cataract should be expected each year.
Gilvarry states: "One in three of us is likely to develop cataracts[iii] so we are calling on people to really be aware of the symptoms and to have their eyes checked regularly."
The new study by Optegra Eye Health Care revealed low awareness of symptoms:
- 30 per cent do not realise cataracts can cause cloudy vision
- Almost half (48 per cent) do not know blurred vision is a symptom
- Just a third (33 per cent) realise cataracts can cause poor vision in bright light
- And 12 per cent of British adults did not know any of the symptoms
Optegra operates 23 eye hospitals and clinics and brings together leading edge research, medical expertise, state-of-the-art surgical equipment and top ophthalmic surgeons renowned for their areas of expertise to offer excellent clinical outcomes.
i. Consumer research carried out April 2015 for Optegra by Censuswide; online research with 2,231 British adults aged 16 years and above.
ii. Minassian DC, Reidy A, Desai P, Farrow S, Vafidis G, Minassian A. The deficit in cataract surgery in England and Wales and the escalating problem of visual impairment: epidemiological modelling of the population dynamics of cataract. Br J Ophthalmol 2000;84:4-8.
iii. As cited in the RCOphth document ‘Cataract surgery guidelines’ Sept 2010.
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SOURCE Optegra Eye Health Care