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April 1992

Age-Related Cataract

Author Affiliations

Brookline, Mass

Arch Ophthalmol. 1992;110(4):459. doi:10.1001/archopht.1992.01080160037018

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This book is the product of the author's sabbatical year in which he re viewed 951 references related to the physical and biological chemistry of aging of the lens. He presents evidence that solar UV radiation is the key factor in lens senescence and that cataract is an extension of the normal aging process. Finally, Young proposes that UVfiltering sunglasses worn constantly outdoors can retard the rate of lens senescence and delay the onset of cataract by several years.

The first part of the book delves into the physics and chemistry of general aging and reviews the principles of oxidative degradation, which leads to tissue deterioration. The three main factors that trigger these oxidative reactions are oxygen, heat, and UV radiation. The latter is the only one that a person can modify in his or her environment. Aging, as it applies to the lens, is then discussed. The author points

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