Visual Function and Mobility After Multifocal Versus Monofocal Intraocular Lens Implantation

Document Type


Publication Date



Clinical relevance: Mobility and fall risk may be important considerations in choosing between intraocular lenses. Background: Fall risk in older adults increases when wearing multifocal spectacles, but little is known about mobility among individuals with different types of intraocular lenses. This study compared visual function, fall risk and balance control following bilateral implantation of monofocal or multifocal intraocular lenses. Methods: This was a non-randomised, cross-sectional study involving adults with bilateral intraocular lenses. Participants completed questionnaires concerning physical functioning, fall history and balance-related confidence. Binocular visual acuity, contrast sensitivity (Pelli-Robson chart and computerized testing), depth perception and glare sensitivity were assessed. Physical performance measures included the Sensory Organization Test, preferred gait speed, Dynamic Gait Index and wayfinding in a virtual environment. Results: Fifteen participants (mean ± standard deviation, 67.1 ± 6.8 years) had monofocal intraocular lenses and 14 participants (68.1 ± 6.1 years) had multifocal intraocular lenses. Contrast sensitivity in the monofocal group was significantly better than that in the multifocal group (p = 0.02) at intermediate and high spatial frequencies. Contrast sensitivity of the monofocal group also was less affected by glare than the contrast sensitivity of the multifocal group, at an intermediate spatial frequency (p = 0.02). However, the multifocal group had significantly better Dynamic Gait Index scores (p = 0.04), even after controlling for perceived physical function. Conclusions: The participants with monofocal intraocular lenses generally had better contrast sensitivity than did those with multifocal intraocular lenses. However, the scores on a mobility test that is associated with fall risk were worse for those with monofocal lenses.