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Latest Research Links Smoking and AMD

One of the lesser-known facts about Macular Degeneration is its relationship to smoking.
Recent BMJ research shows that as many as one in five cases of AMD may have initially been caused by tobacco consumption (around 120,000 cases). And new evidence from the Netherlands now reveals that those who are active smokers, or who have been in the past, develop the eye disease significantly sooner than non-smokers.
Involving a group of 275 patients with wet AMD, the study revealed that past smokers and current smokers developed wet AMD an average of 4.9 years and 7.7 years earlier than lifelong non-smoking patients.
Despite these compelling findings, public awareness of the damage smoking can do to our eyes remains low. David Cartwright, chair of National Eye Health Week explains: “Despite there being a stronger link between AMD and smoking, than lung cancer and smoking, Britain’s ten million smokers are largely unaware of the dangers. Fewer than 10% realise smoking can affect their eye health. This compares to 92% associating smoking with lung cancer.”
Perhaps more should be done to spread the word…
1. Macular Degeneration:  How to Help Avoid Early Vision Loss from Macular Degeneration? Never Smoke.
2. The Eyecare Trust: Encourage Smokers to quit for No Smoking Day

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