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Untreated Poor Vision and Dementia

May 10, 2010 - Rodney Smith

In February the American Journal of Epidemiology published a report that evaluated any potential link between vision and dementia. And they found one!

It turns out that if a person has poor vision- and that the vision problem is left untreated- in can lead to dementia. And the results were pretty dramatic: Patients with poor vision who did not receive proper eye care had a 9.5-fold increased risk of Alzheimer's disease. This same group also had a 5-fold increased risk for cognitive impairment.

This was a University of Michigan study of 625 elderly patients over an eight-and-a-half-year period. At the start of the study all 625 patients were considered to have a normal cognitive function.

The American Optometric Association strongly recommends annual exams for the elderly, and this study is just proof of one of the many reasons why that it is. Please, if there is somebody in your life who is past due for an eye exam please help them to seek the appropriate care.

Dr. Smith has offices in both Cape Coral and Fort Myers. He can be reached at his Cape Coral office at (239) 573-4743 or his Fort Myers office at (239) 985-1422 or emailed at



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