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Psychosocial Impact of Visual Impairment in Working Age Adults
  1. Samuel Robert Nyman1,*,
  2. Margot Ann Gosney2,
  3. Christina Rita Victor1
  1. 1 University of Reading, United Kingdom;
  2. 2 University of Reading and Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust, United Kingdom
  1. Correspondence to: Samuel Robert Nyman, School of Health and Social Care, University of Reading, Bulmershe Court, Reading, RG6 1HY, United Kingdom; s.r.nyman{at}


Aim: To review the evidence for the presence of lower levels of psychosocial well-being in working age adults with visual impairment, and for interventions to improve such levels of psychosocial well-being.

Methods: Systematic review of quantitative studies published in English from 2001 to July 2008 that measured: depression / mental health, anxiety, quality of life, social functioning, or social support.

Results: Included were 29 studies that measured one or more outcomes (n = 52). Working age adults with visual impairment were significantly more likely to report lower levels of mental health (mean difference [MD] = 14.51/100), social functioning (MD = 11.55/100), and quality of life. Studies regarding the prevalence of depressive symptoms produced inconsistent results but had methodological limitations.

Conclusions: Future research is required into the prevalence of loneliness, anxiety, and depression in adults with visual impairment, and to evaluate the effectiveness of interventions for improving psychosocial well-being such as counselling, peer support, and employment programmes.

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