Although visual loss is not severe in many elders, visual impairment is an independent risk factor for falls; it also has a significant impact on quality of life. The prevalence of serious and correctable visual disorders in elders is sufficient to warrant a complete eye examination by an ophthalmologist or optometrist annually or biannually for most elders. Many patients with visual loss benefit from a referral to a low vision program, and primary care providers should not assume that an ophthalmologist or optometrist will automatically make this referral.
Rosenberg EA et al. The visually impaired patient. Am Fam Physician. 2008 May 15;77(10):1431–6. [PMID: 18533377]