Women at higher risk for vision impairment

April 16, 2013

More women than men have the four leading eye diseases in the U.S.: age-related macular degeneration, cataracts, glaucoma, and diabetic retinopathy.

Chicago-Of the 4.1 million Americans age 40 and older who are visually impaired or blind, 2.6 million are women. And, results of a recent study by Prevent Blindness America (PBA) show more women than men have age-related macular degeneration, cataracts, glaucoma, and diabetic retinopathy-the four leading eye diseases in the U.S.

PBA has designated April as Women’s Eye Health and Safety Month in an effort to educate women about the steps they can take today to help preserve vision in the future.

“The first thing every woman should do, especially those ages 40 and older, is get a dilated eye exam," said Hugh R. Parry, president and chief executive officer, PBA. "Through early detection and treatment, vision loss can be lessened.”

PBA also recommends a healthy diet, quitting smoking, taking supplements (as approved by a medical professional), consistently wearing UV-blocking sunglasses with a brimmed hat outdoors, and learning of any family history of eye disease.

For more information on women’s eye health, visit www.preventblindness.org.