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January 1943


Arch Ophthalmol. 1943;29(1):26-35. doi:10.1001/archopht.1943.00880130044002

It is no mere accident that during the past decade increasing attention has been paid to the aging process in its varying aspects. The interest is due to two definite factors that have been exerting a far reaching influence on the nation for many years. They are, first, the noteworthy increase in life expectancy that has occurred and, second, the changing trend in the age composition of the population.

It is unnecessary to dwell at length on the frequently quoted statistics that show the steady increase in life expectancy from antiquity to the present. It is sufficient to emphasize that, whereas from the outbreak of the Revolutionary War until the turn of the nineteenth century, expectancy of life in this country increased only from thirty-five and one-half to fifty years, since 1900 it has shown an increase little short of dramatic. In 1930 the expectancy for the white population was

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