(http://www.MacularDegenerations.com) Keeping ultraviolet light (UV) at bay via contact lenses could potentially help to maintain the macular pigment density of the eyes, noted a recent press release.
According to the press release, the aforementioned research finding was presented recently at the British Contact Lens Association Clinical Conference. The findings come on the heels of previous research suggesting that those who have a substantial macular pigment level seem to be less likely to develop age-related macular degeneration (AMD). The eye condition is a leading cause of vision loss in people older than 55 years.
According to the press release, 40 pre-presbyopic people who had used contact lenses for approximately five years took part in the introductory study. The study focused what impact, if any, wearing contact lenses with UV-blocking properties could have on the density of macular pigment and accommodation. Accommodation, in the context of the study, refers to the capacity of the eyes to keep a clear focus on something as its distance changes.
Of the 40 pre-presbyopic patients, 50% wore contact lenses that had UV-blocking properties and the other 50% wore contact lenses that had scant UV-blocking capabilities. Researchers, meanwhile, kept tabs on the patients’ macular pigment density, ocular wellness and accommodative status.
All patients where matched for age, diet, gender, UV exposure, body mass index, refractive error, race, visual acuity and lifestyle. According to the researchers, macular pigment density readings were substantially higher in eyes that had used contact lenses with UV-blocking properties compared to eyes that had used contact lenses without UV-blocking properties.
Prof. James Wolffsohn, lead author of the study and Aston University’s deputy executive dean for life and health sciences, said in the press release that researchers have suggested that high exposure to UV light could facilitate the “aging processes in the eye.” He added that the preliminary findings suggest that people who use contact lenses with UV-blocking capabilities might be able to slow down the development of AMD.
He acknowledged, however, that more clinical studies are necessary to further consider the findings of the preliminary research.
AMD, which can lead to complete blindness, is an eye condition that tends to impact the elderly. Studies have shown that people can lower their risks of getting the eye condition if they live a healthy lifestyle that includes eating leafy green vegetables, citrus fruits and fish with omega 3 fatty acids.