Falls in Older People With Cataract: a Longitudinal Evaluation of Impact and Risk (FOCUS Study)

The aim of the FOCUS study is to determine the risk and determinants of falls in older people with cataract during their surgical waiting period and in the months following cataract surgery.

FOCUS will provide important information on the impact of cataract-associated vision impairment, delays in receiving surgery and the management of patients after surgery on the rate of falls, in addition to important secondary cataract surgery outcomes of community participation, driving confidence, independent mobility and quality of life.

FOCUS is a national collaborative study involving six public hospital eye clinics across four states - NSW, Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia. The study will include over 700 participants with bilateral cataract, all aged 70 years or above, and will track each participant for up to a two year period.

FOCUS is the first extended investigation of falls risk and fall-related injury in older Australians with cataract to follow participants throughout their surgical journey. It is anticipated that the findings from this research can inform the optimal management of older people with cataract, and limit the negative health impacts of cataract including vulnerability to falls and fall-related injury, visual impairment, restricted socialisation and depression.

This research is being conducted with the support of an NHMRC project grant.

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