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Effectiveness of cataract surgery in reducing driving-related difficulties: a systematic review and meta-analysis
  1. S Subzwari1,
  2. E Desapriya1,2,
  3. G Scime1,
  4. S Babul1,2,
  5. K Jivani1,
  6. I Pike1,2
  1. 1
    British Columbia Injury Research and Prevention Unit, Centre for Community Child Health Research, Child and Family Research Institute, Vancouver, Canada
  2. 2
    Department of Pediatrics, Faculty of Medicine, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada
  1. Ms G Scime, British Columbia Injury Research and Prevention Unit, L408-4480 Oak St., Vancouver, BC V6H 3V4, Canada; gscime{at}


Objectives: To assess the effects of cataract surgery in improving vision and driving performance while reducing driving-related difficulties.

Design: Systematic review and meta-analysis.

Data sources: Twelve electronic databases were searched from the date of inception of each database to May 2007. Other sources of potentially relevant information were also identified and examined.

Review methods: Eligible study designs included randomized controlled trials (RCT), non-RCT, quasi-experimental, case-control, controlled-before-and-after, and cohort studies that examined driving-related indicators in patients undergoing cataract surgery.

Main outcome measures: The outcome measures included any type of driving-related indicator. A secondary outcome measure was motor vehicle (MV) crash involvement.

Results: Seven studies were included in the review and five in the meta-analysis. The overall pooled odds ratio (OR) was 0.12 (95% CI 0.10 to 0.16). Results suggest that the risk of driving-related difficulties was reduced by 88% following cataract surgery.

Conclusions: Cataract surgery is associated with an 88% reduction in the risk of driving-related difficulties. This supports the efficacy of cataract surgery to improve driving in older people, as well as positive implications for a reduction in MV crashes, overall traffic safety, and individual well-being.

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  • Additional appendices are published online only at

  • Competing interests: None.

  • SS, ED, and IP conceived this review and coordinated its preparation. All authors contributed to discussions about core ideas and data interpretation. SS undertook the statistical analysis. GS and KJ collected the data and carried out the quality scoring. SS, ED, and GS wrote the paper with the assistance of KJ, IP, and SB.