Pub. date: 2005 | Online Pub. Date: September 15, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412950565 | Print ISBN: 9780761928201 | Online ISBN: 9781412950565| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Vision Impairment, Late Life Adjustment and Rehabilitation
Joann P. Reinhardt
In later life, chronic physical impairment and associated functional disability become more normative. One common, chronic impairment in later life is age-related vision loss. In a national survey, 17% of middle-aged and older Americans self-reported a vision loss, and this percentage increased with age, with 26% self-reporting a vision loss if we include those aged 75 and above (The Lighthouse, Inc., 1995). Age-related eye diseases resulting in low vision include macular degeneration, glaucoma, cataract, and diabetic retinopathy. Low vision refers to vision loss that cannot be corrected to the normal range by refraction, medicine, or surgery (Faye, 1984). Most persons with vision loss due to age-related eye disease do retain some partial sight and are not completely blind. Common problems cited by older persons with age-related vision loss include difficulty reading and performing daily tasks such as meal preparation or shopping, or no longer being able to drive, which Researchers ...