Visual function, spectacle independence, and patients’ satisfaction after cataract surgery- a study in the Central Region of Ghana
Background: Reduced visual function is associated with diminished quality of life as well as decreased physical and mental health. Poor visual function related to cataracts is also a risk factor for falls and traffic accidents, which may lead to hospital admissions and limit independence.
Objective: To evaluate patients’ satisfaction, visual functions and spectacle independence among patients in the Central Region of Ghana who had cataract surgery in one eye.
Methods: A hospital-based prospective cohort study was carried out on 146 patients booked for cataract surgery: 16 were lost through follow-ups whilst 130 completed the study. Visual functions including visual acuity, contrast sen- sitivity, stereopsis and colour vision were assessed before and after a month of cataract surgery. Objective and subjective refractions were performed to determine the post-surgery refractive status of the participants. Participants completed the NEI-VFQ 25 questionnaire and the scores obtained were used as a construct of their satisfaction.
Results: The NEI-VFQ 25 questionnaire scores indicated patients’ satisfaction was high with an average quality of life score of 77.46. Patients satisfaction was strongly correlated with contrast sensitivity (r=0.653, p<0.001) but moderately correlated with visual acuity (r=-0.554, p<0.001), stereopsis (r=0.490, p<0.001) and colour vision (r=0.466, p<0.001). Contrast sensitivity was a better predictor of patients’ satisfaction than visual acuity and stereopsis. Spectacle independence at distance was achieved in only 44.6% of the participants and 5.4% at near. There was a significant (p>0.001) association between spectacle independence and the two types of cataract surgery performed which included Small Incision Cataract Surgery (SICS) and Extracapsular Cataract Extraction (ECCE). Among those who were spectacle independent, 53.4% of them were low vision patients.
Conclusion: Satisfaction of patients after cataract surgery was high but was greatly influenced by visual functions with contrast sensitivity being a better predictor of satisfaction than visual acuity and stereopsis. Spectacle independence after cataract surgery was low at distance and extremely low at near. The type of cataract surgery performed influenced thespec- tacle independence.
Keywords: TNO; contrast sensitivity; spectacle independence; cataract surgery; intraocular lens.
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