Blindness


Q. My vision is not as good as it was. Am I going blind?

A. There is a multitude of issues that can happen with our eyes that will lead to decreasing visual function. In today’s world, the vast majority of these issues are treatable, particularly if they are managed at an early stage. Early diagnosis of the problem often results in more effective treatment.

 

Q. What are the main causes of blindness?

A. Cataracts are the world’s No. 1 blindness cause and more than 22 million Americans have cataracts in one or both eyes. A person’s risk of developing cataracts increases with age. It is caused by clouding of the natural lens but is treatable with modern surgical techniques which include specialized implants that can potentially get your vision so good that you may not even need any glasses. Glaucoma is a disease that steals vision because of high pressure in the eye.

Experts estimate that about 2.3 million people in the United States have been diagnosed with glaucoma, while another 2 million have glaucoma but are not aware of their deteriorating eyesight. Early treatment with drops or laser is very successful at preventing further vision loss. Macular degeneration occurs in older individuals and affects 10 million Americans. Diabetic retinopathy is a vision-threatening condition that affects approximately ½ of the 18 million Americans with diabetes. A thorough annual eye evaluation is critical in prevention and increasing the probability that your sight will be crisply maintained for a lifetime.

 

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