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Eye Disease Continuing to Increase Among Americans

Latest Data Shows Number of Eye Disease Patients Rising

CHICAGO, April 2 /PRNewswire/ -- Millions of Americans are currently living with age-related eye disease and, according to the latest research from Prevent Blindness America and the National Eye Institute, that number is continuing to climb. With more than 130 million Americans aged 40 and older, more than 30 million suffer from leading causes of vision loss such as cataract, diabetic retinopathy, macular degeneration and glaucoma, according to the newly revised edition of the "Vision Problems in the U.S." study.

The study was an updating of the data from the 2002 Vision Problems in the U.S. report on the prevalence of eye diseases and conditions in America. Information gathered was the result of data collection from a systematic review of the major epidemiological studies from leading ophthalmologic epidemiologists.

Revised data from the Vision Problems in the U.S. study showed that among Americans aged 40 and older:

-- Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) cases rose 25 percent, the

largest increase of the major eye diseases. Currently, 2 million

Americans have been diagnosed with AMD.

-- Diabetic retinopathy affects more than 4.4 million. As the diabetes

epidemic rages on, the number of cases of the disease will continue to


-- There are 2.29 million American adults with glaucoma, the sneak thief

of sight. Yet 2 million more are estimated to have the disease and do

not know it.

-- Cataract is the leading cause of blindness in the world and

22.3 million American adults have the disease. Although surgery can

be highly successful, not all Americans are fortunate enough to have

access to affordable care.

"Our research shows that vision loss continues to threaten the quality of life for millions of Americans," said Daniel D. Garrett, senio

SOURCE Prevent Blindness America
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

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