Half of global population to be short-sighted by 2050

18 February 2016

A new study has indicated that around half of the world's population will be short-sighted by 2050 if current trends continue.

Led by the Brien Holden Vision Institute and the University of New South Wales in Australia, the research indicates that the number of people with vision loss from high myopia is expected to increase sevenfold between 2000 to 2050.

Myopia is set to become a leading cause of permanent blindness worldwide, due to a combination of environmental factors. These include lifestyle changes resulting from decreased time spent outdoors and increased near-work activities.

Key measures that could help address this trend include better planning of comprehensive eye care services, and the development of treatments to control the progression of standard short-sightedness to extreme myopia.

Co-author Professor Kovin Naidoo, chief executive officer of the Brien Holden Vision Institute, added: "We also need to ensure our children receive a regular eye examination from an optometrist or ophthalmologist, preferably each year, so that preventative strategies can be employed if they are at risk."

Posted by Jeanette Royston

 


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