Age, long hours online increase risk of poor eyesight

Cai Wenjun
About 80 percent of Chinese between 60 and 89-years-old suffer from cataracts, according to medical experts.
Cai Wenjun

About 80 percent of Chinese between 60 and 89 years old suffer from cataracts, according to medical experts.

And 90 percent of people over 90 have cataracts, the experts told an online program on Saturday, National Eye Care Day. 

Organized by Johnson & Johnson Vision, the online program invited experts from home and abroad to discuss existing problems threatening people’s vision, and new problems due to the novel coronavirus epidemic.

Left untreated, cataracts can cause blindness and other problems such as glaucoma. 

People with diabetes are likely to suffer cataracts earlier than others, and usually have other fundus lesions.

“People should visit their doctor if suffering from blurred vision, double images and night blindness,” said Dr Yao Ke, director of the Chinese Medical Association's ophthalmology branch. “We have  patients, who have missed the best time for treatment, due to a fear of surgery.” 

In addition to cataracts, experts also called for awareness of dry eye disease due to age, long exposure to computer screens and some eye diseases.

The incidence of dry eye disease in China is up to 30 percent.

Isolation at home because of the novel coronavirus epidemic has increased the risk of dry eye syndrome, as people spend more time on their computers.

“Students are also at a bigger risk of myopia after spending months doing schooling online,” Yao said. “Parents should take their children to a doctor if they show symptoms.”

Wang Liping, general manager of Johnson & Johnson Surgical Vision in China said it has been involving in technology innovation to benefit more patients. Its Catalys Precision Laser System, the first medical equipment introduced in the Lecheng Pilot Zone in Boao, Hainan Province, has completed 100 surgeries since late last year under the innovative policy that allows trials on new technologies without being registered in the mainland at the zone.

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