Association of Cataract Surgery with Traffic Crashes

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Michael J. Siegel, M.D.

A recent study was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association/Ophthalmology edition regarding the positive effects of cataract surgery on reduction of patients’ risks of having a serious traffic crash as a driver.

According to the main authors of the JAMA Study of the 559,546 patients a total of 4680 traffic crashes (2.36 per 1000 patient-years) accrued during the 3.5-year baseline interval and 1200 traffic crashes (2.14 per 1000 patient-years) during the 1-year subsequent interval, representing 2.2% fewer crashes per 1000 patient-years following cataract surgery. The average age of the patients was 76 years with 58% of participants being women (n = 326,065).

Cataracts are part of the normal aging process of the natural lens of the eye and typically form gradually over time. They are the most frequent cause of vision loss in people over 40. Common risk factors include exposure to ultraviolet radiation (excess sunlight), smoking, obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, prolonged use of corticosteroids and family history. Cataract surgery is the most frequently performed operation on adults in the United States, with more than three million Americans having cataracts removed each year. While not risk free, according to most published data it has a 98% success rate. Depending on your situation it may greatly improve the quality of your vision and your day to day function. All of our doctors at Glaucoma Center of Michigan have been extensively trained in the most up-to-date techniques, utilizing the latest in lens technology and feel that modern cataract surgery, when appropriately performed, can in fact be life changing. To read more about the details of cataract surgery including premium lens options please click here.

To read the JAMA study “Association of Cataract Surgery with Traffic Crashes”, please click here.

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