Cataracts Associated with Risk of Hip Fractures - 8 News NOW

Cataracts Associated with Risk of Hip Fractures

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The late Steven Shearing, MD was a wonderful local ophthalmologist and the founder of the Shearing Eye Institute. I did many medical reports with him, and I have never forgotten when he told me, "Cataracts happen to everyone who lives long enough."
In fact, cataract removal is one of the most (if not the most) commonly reimbursed procedures for Medicare patients.
If you are having trouble seeing because of cataracts, but you are putting off the surgery, here is something you need to know:  new research shows a correlation between cataract removal and a reduction in your risk of a hip fracture.
Doctors at the Jules Stein Eye Institute at U.C.L.A. looked at data from more than a million medicare patients from 2002 to 2009 who were diagnosed with cataracts.
Almost 39-percent had surgery for it and the others did not.
The researchers looked at hip fracture rates in both groups and found a startling correlation. One of the authors of the study, Anne Coleman, MD, said this, "Individuals who had cataract surgery had lower rates of hip fractures in the year after the cataract surgery. This was more so in individuals who had diseases such as osteoporosis and glaucoma."   
The benefits were most pronounced among those age 80 to 84.
The study is in the Journal of the American Medical Association. Here is a link to an abstract explaining more details:
http://jama.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=1273017
And an explainer about cataracts in general:
http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/cataracts/DS00050/



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