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blue light and cataracts

The Danger Of Blue Light And Cataracts

For many years, eye care professionals and researchers in the field of opthalmology have warned about the dangers of Blue Light on the eye.  It is well documented that exposure to Blue Light is a direct cause of Adult Macular Degeneration (AMD).  But it has also been understood that cataracts, which in some ways protect the eyes by lessening Blue Light exposure, reduced the development of AMD.  However, new research is making a link between surgery to remove cataracts and an increased risk of AMD.

At a discussion held during the 1st World Congress on Controversies in Ophthalmology (COPHy) in 2010, research results were presented that concluded a direct link between dry AMD progression following cataract surgery.  The study, conducted at Kaplan Medical Center at the Hebrew University in Israel, described a rapid progression of AMD post-surgery.

While both cataracts and AMD are common in senior adults, the progression of these diseases is increased by exposure to Blue Light.  And in the instance of those who develop AMD post-cataract surgery, the study concluded, it is essential to weigh the pros and cons of exposure to Blue Light, taking into account the increased risk of developing or worsening AMD.

Data from several studies including the Blue Mountain Eye Study and the Beaver Dam Eye Study implicated Blue Light exposure after cataract surgery as a serious risk factor in developing AMD.

According to Dr. Deepinder K. Dhalieai, MD, associate professor of opthalmology and chief of refractive surgery at the University of Pittsburgh, the data collected from these and other studies concerning the development of AMD, there was a significant link between exposure to Blue Light after cataract surgery and the risk of developing AMD.

Lessening exposure to Blue Light after cataract surgery is essential in lowering the risk of AMD. So what can you do to lessen your risk? Take these three steps:

Blue-Filtering Lens Implants

Patients should consult with their surgeon regarding the implantation of Blue-Filtering IOLs (intraocular lenses) at the time of cataract surgery.

Blue Blocking Sunglasses

Wearing eyeglasses or sunglasses that block Blue Light is also essential in reducing AMD risk. The Uvex S0360X is a great choice for home use because they fit over prescription glasses.

Change Your Lighting

Patients should also remove Blue Light within their home environment.  Simply replace CFLs (compact fluorescent lamp) or standard light bulbs with The Good Night Light by Definity Digital, which produces no blue light, but still casts a normal white light.

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Sebrina Smith

Sebrina Zerkus Smith is a Southern Gal that has been scratching the writer’s itch for nearly 30 years. Her career began in Washington, D.C., in 1987, fresh out of collage and full of ideals. While plying her trade by day on congressional reps and senators, at night she burned the candle writing features for local newspapers and national magazines. She quickly realized that her southern upbringing gave her a unique and humorous voice that resonated with her readers. Eventually, she moved to Los Angeles where she pursued her dream of becoming a novelist and screenwriter. She paid her bills by working as a freelance writer for major marketing projects from studios such as CBS, NBC and Disney. Realizing that the future of writing lay with the internet, she was bitten by the blogging bug back in the 90’s, back before it was even called “blogging.” Then it was still just writing and trying to make a living. Through those early blogging years, Sebrina found passion and purpose. Over the past 10 years she has written articles for clients such as LightCues.com, MatterMore.com, Greenopolis, MacAddict, Yahoo, CNN and more. Today, Sebrina writes about a variety of topics including the Southern Experience, sustainability, clean water, food, gardening, sleep and her obsession with pugs. She is a regular paid contributor to WildOats.com as well as other entities. She now lives in Houston with her husband Jeff and their pug Newton. She hopes one day to complete her opus, Living Is Easy With Eyes Closed.