Many Americans unaware of increased risk to UV exposure for certain drugs, light-colored eyes

May 23, 2014

The American Academy of Ophthalmology recently released results of a poll that found the majority of Americans are unaware of the increased risks to ultraviolet (UV) light exposure that are linked to common drugs and having light-colored eyes.

San Francisco-The American Academy of Ophthalmologyrecently released results of a poll that found the majority of Americans are unaware of the increased risks to ultraviolet (UV) light exposure that are linked to common drugs and having light-colored eyes. 

UV exposure can lead to an increased risk of eye cancer, cataracts, photokeratitis, and pterygium. Despite the danger, the poll found nearly half of Americans are unaware that medications can cause photosensitivity-even though about one-third of adults take drugs that increase their susceptibility to UV damage. And while 54 percent of Americans have blue, green, or hazel eyes, only 32 percent of those with light eyes know that they are more susceptible to UV damage.

To make matters worse, the poll found that while 83 percent of Americans wear sunglasses, only about half of those who do wear sunglasses check for a UV protection label before purchasing a pair. And just 32 percent said they make their children wear UV-blocking sunglasses. 

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