University of Surrey

Test tubes in the lab Research in the ATI Dance Research

Vision impairment and risk of dementia: Findings from the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing

Davies-Kershaw, Hilary, Hackett, Ruth A, Cadar, Dorina, Herbert, Annie, Orrell, Martin and Steptoe, Andrew (2018) Vision impairment and risk of dementia: Findings from the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, 66 (9). pp. 1823-1829.

jgs.15456.pdf - Version of Record
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution.

Download (329kB) | Preview



To determine whether vision impairment is independently associated cross‐sectionally and longitudinally with dementia.


Retrospective cohort study.


English Longitudinal Study of Ageing.


Individuals aged 50 and older


Cross‐sectional association between self‐rated vision (poor or blind, moderate, normal) and dementia was analyzed, adjusting for potential confounders (sex, wealth, education, cardiovascular risk factors) using multivariable logistic regression. We also modelled the adjusted longitudinal association between vision impairment and dementia over an average of 11 years of follow‐up using Cox proportional hazards regression for individuals aged 50 to 69 and those aged 70 and older.


After adjustment for confounders, participants who rated their vision as moderate were 2.0 (95% confidence interval (CI)=1.4–3.1) times as likely as those with normal vision to have dementia, and those who rated their vision as poor were 4.0 (95% CI=2.6–6.1) times as likely. Longitudinally, individuals aged 50 to 69 who rated their vision as moderate (1.8, 95% CI=1.0–3.0) or poor (3.6, 95% CI=1.1–11.8) were at greater risk of developing dementia than those who rated their vision as normal. There was no significant difference in risk in those aged 70 and older.


Our study confirms and extends findings from other countries, demonstrating cross‐sectional associations between moderate and poor self‐rated vision and dementia in England in all participants aged 50 and older and longitudinally over an 11‐year period in those aged 50 to 69. These results help establish vision loss as a risk factor for dementia, although it is unclear why. Research is needed to determine whether screening and treatment for vision loss may slow cognitive decline.

Item Type: Article
Divisions : Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences > School of Health Sciences
Authors :
Hackett, Ruth A
Cadar, Dorina
Herbert, Annie
Orrell, Martin
Steptoe, Andrew
Date : 24 September 2018
DOI : 10.1111/jgs.15456
Copyright Disclaimer : © 2018 The Authors. The Journal of the American Geriatrics Society published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of The American Geriatrics Society. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Uncontrolled Keywords : Aging; vision impairment; dementia; epidemiology
Depositing User : Melanie Hughes
Date Deposited : 29 Aug 2018 12:00
Last Modified : 14 Jun 2019 09:51

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item


Downloads per month over past year

Information about this web site

© The University of Surrey, Guildford, Surrey, GU2 7XH, United Kingdom.
+44 (0)1483 300800