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March 1951

The Causes of Blindness in England and Wales.

AMA Arch Intern Med. 1951;87(3):474-475. doi:10.1001/archinte.1951.03810030147024

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From a thorough and scholarly analysis of a group of 19,149 certificates from a total of some 76.000 blind persons registered in England and Wales, various statistical studies of age, sex and cause are presented. These cannot fail to interest the reader with an academic interest in the cause and prevention of blindness. The progress of medicine in the almost complete eradication of such diseases as smallpox and ophthalmia neonatorum is reflected in the current statistics as compared with previous studies, some of which are briefly given.

Ninety-one per cent of the blind persons studied were blind in both eyes from the same cause, and it is somewhat surprising to learn that 24.6 per cent of cases were due to cataract, over one third of which were considered to be remediable. Glaucoma accounted for 13.4 per cent, myopia 10.8 per cent, congenital defects 9.9 per cent, syphilis 6.7 per cent,

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