Hyperlipidemia A Predictor of Postoperative Visual Loss

Fundus Oculi Examination
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An AAO presentation shows age, sex, hyperlipidemia, nonspinal procedures and low-income area are risk factors for developing postoperative vision loss.

This article is part of Ophthalmology Advisor’s Focus on Retina coverage from the 2021 meeting of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, held in New Orleans from November 12 to 15, 2021. The team at Ophthalmology Advisor will be reporting on a variety of the research presented by the retinal experts at the AAO. Check back for more from the AAO 2021 Meeting.


Men who have hyperlipidemia are more likely to develop postoperative visual loss (POVL) after nonocular surgery, according to results presented at the American Academy of Ophthalmology 2021 Annual Meeting, held in New Orleans from November 12-15. The study also showed the finding was associated with advanced age.

To identify the incidence and various predictors of POVL, the team utilized the Florida State Inpatient Database for 2017 and evaluated differences between inpatients with and without POVL following surgery. The researchers assessed these differences with chi-square, t-tests, and calculated odds ratios using logistic regression analysis.

The researchers identified 308 cases of POVL out of 1,048,575 hospitalizations which corresponds to a rate of 2.94 per 10,000 hospitalizations. The average age was 52.59 years old, 53% were women, and 58% were White. Most patients diagnosed with POVL had retinal vascular occlusion (73%), 19% had ischemic optic neuropathy (ION) and 10% had sudden visual loss (SVL). The researchers noted 7 patients (2%) who had retinal vascular occlusion in addition to ION and SVL. 

The investigators utilized multivariate regression and identified the following risk factors to be associated with developing POVL: age, male sex, hyperlipidemia, nonspinal procedures and low-income area. 

“Older men with hyperlipidemia undergoing nonspinal procedures had a higher risk of developing POVL,” concluded the researchers. 

Visit Ophthalmology Advisor’s conference section for the complete Focus on Retina coverage from the AAO 2021.



Lin JC, French DD, Margo CR, Greenberg PB. The epidemiology of postoperative visual loss for non-ocular surgery. Paper presented at: American Academy of Ophthalmology 2021 Annual Meeting; November 12-15, 2021; New Orleans. Abstract PA052.