Document Type


Publication Date



This is the accepted manuscript version of the article published in the journal Ophthalmic Epidemiology, 2022 Apr;29(2):128-138.

The final published article can be found at the journal's website:


PURPOSE: Age-related macular degeneration (AMD), a leading cause of irreversible blindness, increases fall risk through impaired central vision. Falls place an enormous economic burden on healthcare systems. We hypothesized that AMD treatments may reduce patients' falls risk. This systematic review (ID #: 172623) synthesized the current understanding of wet and dry AMD treatments' impact on patient falls and mobility, connecting these two public health issues.

METHODS: On April 17, 2020, PubMed, Scopus, CINAHL, and the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials were queried. Clinical trials and observational studies were included, while non-English and non-primary studies were excluded. Two authors screened, extracted data, and assessed bias using RoB-2 and ROBINS-I. A third author served as a tie breaker.

RESULTS: This database search resulted in 3,525 studies, with an additional 112 identified through bibliography review. Ten articles met eligibility criteria. Most studies featured the outcome of interest as a secondary outcome (n = 4) and patient-reported adverse events (n = 5), rather than a primary focus (n = 2). Ten out of the 11 outcomes had a moderate to serious risk of bias. No two studies used the same instrument to measure falls or mobility.

CONCLUSION: Despite the potential positive impact of AMD treatments on patient falls and mobility, quality data on this relationship are lacking. This work underscores the need to broaden ophthalmologic research outcomes beyond visual parameters to include patient-centred, functional measures. Incorporating standardized methods to track falls and screen for difficulty with walking and balance would enable evaluation of AMD treatments on functional outcomes, potentially helping guide management.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Available for download on Saturday, April 01, 2023