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Invited Commentary
July 2016

UV-A Protection From Auto Glass, Cataracts, and the Ophthalmologist

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Ophthalmology, Pathology, and Pharmacology, Eye Center of Excellence, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center, New Orleans, Louisiana
JAMA Ophthalmol. 2016;134(7):776-777. doi:10.1001/jamaophthalmol.2015.5101

UV radiation from the sun is associated with 90% of skin cancers and is linked to cataract formation. The adverse effects of UV radiation while driving have been previously reported. Previous publications have documented increased prevalence of left-sided cortical cataracts1 and skin cancers2 because of asymmetrical UV exposure when the driver is situated on the left side of the automobile. A US study of 898 patients with skin cancer demonstrated that a left-sided skin cancer was more common in those who spent more time driving because the driver’s seat is on the left side of most automobiles in the United States. Conversely, a reduction of UV exposure has beneficial effects, with one study reporting a 93% reduction in cell death in the skin when UV exposure was filtered through UV-absorbing auto glass.3

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