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Cataracts and Falls
2 Minute EBP Challenge
Stay up-to-date the easy way!
How would you answer this question?
In patients with severe cataracts who undergo cataract surgery, what unexpected outcome was found?
a. Increase in visual perception.
b. Decrease in hip fractures.
c. Increase in osteoporosis.
d. New onset Type II diabetes.
The correct answer is "b" decrease in hip fractures.
Surgery for severe cataracts produced the expected outcome of improved vision that resulted in better spacial perception, better balance, and fewer falls. An unexpected outcome was a significant decrease in hip fractures, probably due to better balance from improved vision.
Patients with osteoporosis are more prone to hip fractures but cataract surgery does not increase osteoporosis risk, nor the risk for diabetes.
The authors also point out that cataracts increase postural instability. Assess patients with a history of falls for visual disturbances as visual correction could decrease fall risk.
From: Tseng, V. et al. (2012). Risk of fractures following cataract surgery in Medicare beneficiaries. JAMA, 308, 493-501.
Congratulations to Ken Jackson who won a copy of my What You Don't Know About Vital Signs DVD for answering this week's question correctly. Congratulations Ken!
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David W. Woodruff, MSN, RN-BC, CNS, CMSRN, CEN
President, Ed4Nurses, Inc.
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