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January 1968

Lighting and Health Hazards

Arch Ophthalmol. 1968;79(1):2. doi:10.1001/archopht.1968.03850040004002

ALTHOUGH generally ignoring one another's opinions, ophthalmologists and illuminating engineers have had a common interest in artificial lighting but have viewed the health hazards quite differently. Design architects and the general public who are also concerned have had a confusing time trying to make sense out of the irreconcilable advice they receive from the two presumed authorities.

Illuminating engineers have believed the more light the better, with at least one proponent asserting that the sky (light) should be the limit. But more to the point they have repeatedly implied that low illumination, or what for their purposes is better called "inadequate lighting," is harmful to the eyes. A popular photoelectric meter, calibrated in guess units for reading, sewing, and other critical tasks is taken to be the final arbiter of what is adequate and proper. Ophthalmologists have rarely taken the trouble to express their beliefs in print but have nevertheless

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