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Vision loss on the rise among Americans over 40

A worrisome report indicates that vision loss among Americans over the age of 40 has increased 23% since 2000. Details of the report which was commissioned by the Prevent Blindness America (PBA) and the U.S. National Eye Institute (NEI) were presented at an eye health summit in Washington D.C. recently. Some of the startling statistics about Amercians aged 40 and over that were shared included:
  • a stunning 89% increase in diabetic retinopathy
  • a 22% increase in open-angle glaucoma
  • a 19% increase in cataracts
And among Amercians 50 and older a 25% increase in age-related macular degeneration was noted. Researchers were especially concerned by the huge spike in diabetic retinopathy cases, which is a result of the skyrocketing numbers of diabetics in the United States. It is estimated that 16 million Americans suffer from Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes and 8 out of every 10 diabetics suffers from diabetic retinopathy. This staggering trend will probably cost an extra $1-billion in health care and related losses.*    

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