Global Prevalence of Presbyopia and Vision Impairment from Uncorrected Presbyopia: Systematic Review, Meta-analysis, and Modelling

Ophthalmology. 2018 Oct;125(10):1492-1499. doi: 10.1016/j.ophtha.2018.04.013. Epub 2018 May 9.


Topic: Presbyopia prevalence and spectacle-correction coverage were estimated by systematic review and meta-analysis of epidemiologic evidence, then modeled to expand to country, region, and global estimates.

Clinical relevance: Understanding presbyopia epidemiologic factors and correction coverage is critical to overcoming the burden of vision impairment (VI) from uncorrected presbyopia.

Methods: We performed systematic reviews of presbyopia prevalence and spectacle-correction coverage. Accepted presbyopia prevalence data were gathered into 5-year age groups from 0 to 90 years or older and meta-analyzed within World Health Organization global burden of disease regions. We developed a model based on amplitude of accommodation adjusted for myopia rates to match the regionally meta-analyzed presbyopia prevalence. Presbyopia spectacle-correction coverage was analyzed against country-level variables from the year of data collection; variation in correction coverage was described best by a model based on the Human Development Index, Gini coefficient, and health expenditure, with adjustments for age and urbanization. We used the models to estimate presbyopia prevalence and spectacle-correction coverage in each age group in urban and rural areas of every country in the world, and combined with population data to estimate the number of people with near VI.

Results: We estimate there were 1.8 billion people (prevalence, 25%; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.7-2.0 billion [23%-27%]) globally with presbyopia in 2015, 826 million (95% CI, 686-960 million) of whom had near VI because they had no, or inadequate, vision correction. Global unmet need for presbyopia correction in 2015 is estimated to be 45% (95% CI, 41%-49%). People with presbyopia are more likely to have adequate optical correction if they live in an urban area of a more developed country with higher health expenditure and lower inequality.

Conclusions: There is a significant burden of VI from uncorrected presbyopia, with the greatest burden in rural areas of low-resource countries.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Eyeglasses
  • Global Health
  • Humans
  • Presbyopia / epidemiology*
  • Presbyopia / physiopathology
  • Prevalence
  • Vision Disorders / epidemiology*
  • Vision Disorders / physiopathology
  • Visual Acuity*
  • Visually Impaired Persons / statistics & numerical data*