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October 1989

Corneal Changes Associated With Chronic UV Irradiation

Author Affiliations

From the Dana Center for Preventive Ophthalmology, The Wilmer Institute and School of Hygiene and Public Health (Drs Taylor, West, and Newland and Ms Munoz), and the Department of Environmental Health Sciences, Hygiene and Public Health (Drs Rosenthal and Emmett), The Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Md. Dr Rosenthal is now with the University of Massachusetts, Worcester; Dr Newland is now with Flinders Medical Center, Bedford Park, South Australia; and Dr Emmett is now with the National Institute of Occupational Health and Safety, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.

Arch Ophthalmol. 1989;107(10):1481-1484. doi:10.1001/archopht.1989.01070020555039

• The association between exposure to UV radiation and corneal disease was investigated in 838 watermen who work on the Chesapeake Bay, Maryland. Individual ocular exposure was calculated by combining a detailed occupational history with laboratory and field measurements. Pterygium was found in 140, climatic droplet keratopathy in 162, and pinguecula in 642. Logistic regression analysis showed that pterygium and climatic droplet keratopathy were significantly associated with a broad band of UV radiation exposure (UV-B, 290 to 320 nm; A1, 320 to 340 nm; and A2, 340 to 400 nm), but the association with pinguecula was weaker. Simple measures such as wearing a hat or spectacles protect the eye and could potentially reduce the amount of pterygium and climatic droplet keratopathy attributable to UV radiation exposure.

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