Did you know that having cataract surgery could prolong your life? Research from Blue Mountains Eye Study states that people who have undergone cataract removal to improve their vision tend to live longer than those who elect not to have cataract surgery. This study was a population-based study that examined eye diseases in older people groups in Australia.
The small study took place between 1992 and 2007, and it was comprised of 354 people aged 49 and up. Each person had been diagnosed with a cataract-related vision problem. Some participants had undergone cataract surgery and some had not.
Jie Jin Wang, Ph.D., Westmead Millenium Institute, led the team of researchers through the project. The team made adjustments for age and gender and many other risk factors such as high blood pressure, diabetes, smoking, heart disease, body mass index and measures of frailty. After the baseline exam, the team followed up with the participants both 5 and 10 years later (Source: Business Standard).
Follow-up visits showed that the patients who received surgery to remove their cataracts experienced improved outcomes beyond just their vision. Cataract surgery did, in fact, enhance their overall health. Dr. Wang pointed out that those patients who did not receive cataract surgery may have had other health problems which prevented them from electing to have their cataracts removed. These other underlying health issues could have affected the rate of survival of this group as well.