Research shows an association between cognitive decline and vision impairment among older Americans.
Analysis found that among adults aged 45 years and older, subjective cognitive decline (SCD)-related functional limitations were three and a half times higher among adults with vision impairment than those without. The findings were published in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, produced by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the US this May.
The number of Americans with vision impairment is expected to double over the next three decades. Alongside similarly alarming increases in dementia, researchers increasingly look to the eyes for early detection of cognitive decline.
Early detection and monitoring of preclinical cognitive decline are goals that Alzheimer's disease researchers continue to strive toward. The American Optometric Association’s chief public health officer Dr Michael Dueñas says, "Optometry is the most accessible eye care profession and that accessibility paired with technology and understanding of early cognitive decline is going to be essential in raising our patients' health outcomes and preventing or slowing neurodegenerative disease.”