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Color vision problems become more common with age, reports Optometry and Vision Science
Date:2/20/2014

Philadelphia, Pa. (February 20, 2014) - Abnormal color vision increases significantly with agingaffecting one-half or more of people in the oldest age groups, reports a study in Optometry and Vision Science, official journal of the American Academy of Optometry. The journal is published by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, a part of Wolters Kluwer Health.

While few people younger than 70 have problems with color vision, the rate increases rapidly through later decades of life, according to the new research by Marilyn E. Schneck, PhD, and colleagues of The Smith-Kettlewell Eye Research Institute, San Francisco. They write, "We find the color discrimination declines with age and that the majority of color defects among the older population are of the blue-yellow type."

Color Vision Abnormalities Increase with Age

The researchers administered color vision tests to a random sample of 865 older adultsage range 58 to 102 years. The study excluded subjects with any type of congenital color-vision defect ("color blindness."). The types and rates of color vision abnormalities were assessed in different age groups.

Overall, 40 percent of the participants had abnormal results on one of the two color vision tests used in the study. Twenty percent failed both tests.

The failure rate was markedly higher in older age groups. Although color-vision abnormalities were uncommon in people younger than 70, they were present in about 45 percent of people in their mid-70s, up to 50 percent of those 85 and older, and nearly two-thirds of those in their mid-90s.

Nearly 80 percent of the abnormalities involved confusion of the lighter (pastel) shades of blue versus purple and yellow versus green and yellow-gree
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Contact: Connie Hughes
Connie.Hughes@wolterskluwer.com
646-674-6348
Wolters Kluwer Health
Source:Eurekalert

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