Abstract

EFFECT OF CATARACT AND UNCORRECTED REFRACTIVE ERROR ON QUALITY OF LIFE

Author(s): Vaishu Ann Marie Varghese1, Gurvinder Kaur2, Dona Mariam Isac3, Aprajita Sinha4, Satish Thomas5

BACKGROUND
Several studies have been conducted to know the prevalence of various causes of visual impairment and risk factors for the eye diseases but the impact of these diseases on the quality of life has not been extensively investigated.
AIM
To show the effect of visual impairment on quality of life and to determine the correlation of cataract and uncorrected refractive error with quality of life.
DESIGN
Prospective, Descriptive Study.
MATERIAL AND METHODS
500 patients with diagnosed cataract (n=450) and uncorrected refractive error (n=50) who attended the Outpatient Department of Ophthalmology in Christian Medical College, Ludhiana from January 2014 to June 2014 were administered the National Eye Institute 25 Item Visual Function Questionnaire (NEI VFQ-25) which has a base set of 25 vision-targeted questions. All answered items were scored so that a higher score indicated better functioning. Continuous variables were expressed as mean±standard deviation and categorical variables were expressed as percentages. Multiple regression analysis was used to compare the scores with and without adjustment of visual acuity. A two-tailed p value < 0.05 was considered significant.
RESULTS
The mean age in our study was 59.87 years in cataract and 33.33 years in refractive error. There was a positive correlation in subjects with refractive error in most of the subscales in both with and without adjustment for visual acuity (p<0.05). The difference in scores between with and without adjustment of visual acuity groups was modest. For patients with cataract, there was significant reduction in all the subscale scores except for ocular pain, psychosocial domains and colour vision after adjusting for visual acuity. The subjects with refractive error had greater scores in all subscales when compared to those with cataract and the difference was statistically significant (p=0.000).
CONCLUSIONS
It was found that quality of life was significantly reduced as the visual impairment progressed. We also found that vision had a predominant effect on the quality of life than the eye disease alone.