Do radiologist tend to loose their eyesight at a quicker rate?

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ILikeDrugs

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I have astigmatism and have noticed that my sight has been getting worse from being on the computer for long periods of time. Radiology is definitely my number one choice ever since I fell in love with imaging while studying neuroscience and psychology. I just don't want the job to rip me of my eyesight. Neurology is my other favorite specialty, so at least I have that to fall back on if rads doesn't work out.

So how much of a toll does looking at images all day cost the eyes of radiologists. Are you provided with super expensive monitors and equipment that help curb these potential problems? What percentage of reads are on computer?

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I just didn't think that using your eyes was harmful to your eyes...
Yeah, ok smartass. Have you been living a cave? Starring at a computer screen for long periods of time has been known to cause eye strain/fatigue and blurred vision. Why would it be outrageous to ask if this could lead to vision problems that arrive much quicker?
 
I'm always careful to not look up at the monitors since that's suppose to fatigue your eyes more rapidly. I try to get my eye level to that of the top of the monitors or above. Since I'm not particularly tall, that usually means lowering the table and raising my chair. I don't know if it really helps that much, but I had an attending who actually published on the ergonomics of radiologists and this was one of her tricks.
 
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Ya I don't know the official correlation between staring at an LCD/television and visual acuity. It seems like there are other important factors at play.

ie. I needed glasses well before I ever started staring at the tv, and on the other hand I know computer science/engineering majors who have spent countless hours behind a monitor who are 20/20 uncorrected.

Don't get too worried about it.
 
Ophtho resident here. Working on the computer does NOT reduce your visual acuity. You do, however, blink less when you're concentrating on a task (reading, etc). So the "blurred vision" you mentioned is b/c of your tear film evaporating and your eyes getting dry in between delayed blinks. Often the blurriness goes away once you blink b/c you spread your tear film and the eye is moist again. This is a classic symptom of dry eye syndrome.

My only recommendation for my radiology colleagues is to put a bottle of artificial tears (not Visine!) near your station and use it a few times a day if you're suffering from dry eye syndrome!
 
Ophtho resident here. Working on the computer does NOT reduce your visual acuity. You do, however, blink less when you're concentrating on a task (reading, etc). So the "blurred vision" you mentioned is b/c of your tear film evaporating and your eyes getting dry in between delayed blinks. Often the blurriness goes away once you blink b/c you spread your tear film and the eye is moist again. This is a classic symptom of dry eye syndrome.

My only recommendation for my radiology colleagues is to put a bottle of artificial tears (not Visine!) near your station and use it a few times a day if you're suffering from dry eye syndrome!

While I am only a rads residents, I do remember learning about "school myopia" during med school and board study. There are actually some studies that show a strong correlation between near work and myopia. This was actually first noticed with increased incidence myopia among Navy seamen on submarines who became nearsighted which was theorized to be because there's nothing far away to look at for months and months. This makes sense too... think about it; how many people do you know in med/law school that have glasses compared to others?

I would certainly think that radiologists would be at increased risk for this form of myopia, especially if one is already genetically susceptible. Do a google search to read more on how to prevent it... if i remember correctly there are certain exercises one can do and certain reading habits to prevent it, like taking frequent breaks to focus on distant objects.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15555525
"Overall, while there may be a small genetic contribution to school myopia, detectable under conditions of low environmental variation, environmental change [increased near-work] appears to be the major factor increasing the prevalence of myopia around the world"

http://books.google.com/books?id=65...ed=0CCUQ6AEwBw#v=onepage&q=submarines&f=false
 
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This isn't really related to original question, but aren't interventional radiologists at high risk for cataracts?
 
This isn't really related to original question, but aren't interventional radiologists at high risk for cataracts?

It's a function of radiation dose, so yeah, interventionalists are at a higher risk. I wouldn't say they're at a high risk though. Just don't get into a staring contest with the tube from a foot away and remember to wear the leaded goggles and you'll be fine.
 
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