Increasing incidence of cataract surgery: population-based study

J Cataract Refract Surg. 2013 Sep;39(9):1383-9. doi: 10.1016/j.jcrs.2013.03.027. Epub 2013 Jun 29.


Purpose: To estimate the incidence of cataract surgery in a defined population and to determine longitudinal cataract surgery patterns.

Setting: Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota, USA.

Design: Cohort study.

Methods: Rochester Epidemiology Project (REP) databases were used to identify all incident cataract surgeries in Olmsted County, Minnesota, between January 1, 2005, and December 31, 2011. Age-specific and sex-specific incidence rates were calculated and adjusted to the 2010 United States white population. Data were merged with previous REP data (1980 to 2004) to assess temporal trends in cataract surgery. Change in the incidence over time was assessed by fitting generalized linear models assuming a Poisson error structure. The probability of second-eye cataract surgery was calculated using the Kaplan-Meier method.

Results: Included were 8012 cataract surgeries from 2005 through 2011. During this time, incident cataract surgery significantly increased (P<.001), peaking in 2011 with a rate of 1100 per 100 000 (95% confidence interval, 1050-1160). The probability of second-eye surgery 3, 12, and 24 months after first-eye surgery was 60%, 76%, and 86%, respectively, a significant increase compared with the same intervals in the previous 7 years (1998 to 2004) (P<.001). When merged with 1980 to 2004 REP data, incident cataract surgery steadily increased over the past 3 decades (P<.001).

Conclusion: Incident cataract surgery steadily increased over the past 32 years and has not leveled off, as reported in Swedish population-based series. Second-eye surgery was performed sooner and more frequently, with 60% of residents having second-eye surgery within 3 months of first-eye surgery.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Distribution
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Cataract / epidemiology*
  • Cataract Extraction / statistics & numerical data*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cohort Studies
  • Databases, Factual
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Minnesota / epidemiology
  • Probability
  • Risk Factors
  • Sex Distribution
  • Young Adult