Sabtu, 02 Januari 2010

Myopia is on the Rise

According to a recent report, the prevalence of myopia (nearsightedness) in persons aged 12-54 years in the U.S. has increased from 25% to 41.6% in just the past 30 years. That’s too large a change in such a short a time to be due solely to a genetic factor; there must be an environmental component. A clue is that myopia is more common in people with more than 12 years of education, suggesting that close work such as reading and computer work might be a risk factor.

The good news is that myopia is relatively easy to correct with eyeglasses, contacts, or LASIK surgery. As health problems go, myopia is not the big one. Nevertheless, scientists are curious to know what might be causing the rise in myopia so that preventive measures could be undertaken if possible. Over 40% of the population with myopia is a lot of people! If nothing else, correction of myopia represents a significant national heath care expenditure, even if it's not a big deal to any one person.

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