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Survey Confirms Americans Have a True 'Blind Spot' Regarding Their Eye Health - and the Real Danger of UV Rays
Date:11/12/2007

New England Eye Institute and Transitions Optical, Inc. Poll Finds the Eye

Health of Americans at Great Risk

PINELLAS PARK, Fla., Nov. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- To an almost alarming level, a recent survey(1) finds that individuals remain largely unaware of the dangers that extended exposure to harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays can have on their eyes. The survey, conducted by the New England Eye Institute and Transitions Optical, found that while nearly 80 percent of consumers are aware that UV exposure can cause skin cancer, only five percent know it can harm the eyes.

Every single day -- whether sunny or cloudy, and despite the time of the year -- eyes are exposed to UV radiation from the sun. The survey found that more than half (57 percent) of respondents said they do not wear protective eyewear when in the sun for extended periods of time. With Americans spending an average of 3.5 hours per day outdoors, this is a significant amount of time for UV damage to occur each day - amounting to a potential of more than 1,000 hours of UV damage to their eyes each year.

"The risk that we place on our precious sight by not protecting our eyes is alarming," says Barry Barresi, O.D, Ph.D., president, New England Eye Institute. "Unless Americans recognize the threat that UV poses and take action to protect the eyes -- eye health issues, including cataracts, macular degeneration and cases of preventable blindness will continue to skyrocket." In fact, according to the World Health Organization, some 3.2 million people worldwide are blind as a result of cataracts, which have been linked to UV exposure(2).

Younger people, ages 18-24, are at an even greater risk for UV damage that will impact their vision later on in life as they are more active and tend to spend more time outdoors.

A proactive step every individual can take immediately to combat harmful UV rays is to wear photochromic lenses, which are prescription eyeglass lenses t
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SOURCE Transitions Optical, Inc.
Copyright©2007 PR Newswire.
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