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Cataracts increase depression risk in elderly

A study published in Optometry and Vision Science reveals that senior citizens with cataracts are prone to symptoms of depression. Women were more likely than men to develop the symptoms of depression and the risk was even higher among those with no formal education. The study involved 4,600 adults aged 60 or older who completed a depression questionnaire and had a clinical eye examination to determine the presence and severity of cataracts. 49 percent of the study participants had cataracts in at least one eye and the depression questionnaire revealed that 8 percent of participants had symptoms of depression. Researchers found that the link between depression and cataracts is independent of other factors including socio-economic status, lifestyle factors and visual acuity. The symptoms of depression were 33 percent more when cataracts were present in either one or both eyes.*

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