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Announcements: Healthy Vision Month --- May 2010

May is Healthy Vision Month. The theme for 2010 is "Your eyes are the windows to your health: schedule an eye exam today." CDC's Vision Health Initiative (VHI) is partnering with the National Eye Institute and encouraging all persons to make vision a health priority by scheduling a comprehensive dilated eye examination. A comprehensive dilated eye examination includes dilation, tonometry, and visual field and acuity tests.

In the United States, an estimated 14 million persons are visually impaired, and approximately 11 million of them have refractive errors that easily can be corrected with glasses or contact lenses (1). Among persons aged ≥40 years, 3.3 million have vision impairment and blindness not further correctable by glasses, and that number is projected to reach 5.5 million by the year 2020 (2). The major causes of vision impairment and blindness are diabetic retinopathy, cataracts, glaucoma, and age-related macular degeneration. (Information about these and other eye diseases is available at http://www.nei.nih.gov/health). Early detection and timely treatment of these diseases by an eye-care provider can delay disease progression and prevent vision loss. Additional information on Healthy Vision Month, VHI, and strategies for prevention and control of common eye diseases are available at http://www.cdc.gov/visionhealth and http://www.nei.nih.gov/healthyeyes.

References

  1. Vitale S, Cotch MF, Sperduto RD. Prevalence of visual impairment in the United States. JAMA 2006;295:2158--63.
  2. The Eye Diseases Prevalence Research Group. Causes and prevalence of visual impairment among adults in the United States. Arch Ophthalmol 2004;122:477--85.


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