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December 19, 1959


Author Affiliations

722 Scott St. Covington, Ky.

JAMA. 1959;171(16):2246. doi:10.1001/jama.1959.03010340090023

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To the Editor:—  Dr. Ralph W. Ballin's letter in The Journal, Oct. 24, page 1143, contains generalizations that should be clarified. There are relatively few manifestations of generalized systemic disease that appear in the eye, and most of these are known by the patient and his family physician well before the patient is ever seen by an ophthalmologist. It is the ophthalmologist's duty to notify the patient's physician of his findings, but it is not his responsibility to complete the medical examination or to prescribe the medicaments required, if any.Arteriosclerotic and degenerative conditions are slowly progressive, and there is no evidence that any local or systemic medication will delay their progression in the eye. The only symptom the patient has is slow loss of vision. This can be temporarily benefited by increasing the strength of the glasses, producing the magnification necessary to read. I have seen hundreds of patients

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