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Video: Second Hand Smoke Can Cause Eye Damage In Children
Second hand smoke can cause eye damage in children
Scientists have found that secondhand smoke in children is associated with thinning of the choroid, the choroid. It is possible that this can lead to visual impairment in older age.
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Secondhand smoke can damage the eyes in children. It is possible that this can cause visual impairment in older age. This is reported by Chinese scientists at JAMA Ophthalmology.
“Secondary exposure of children to tobacco smoke is an important public health threat. Up to 40% of children face this problem,”said study co-author Jason Yam of the China University of Hong Kong.
It is already known that secondhand smoke affects eye health in adults. The problems that it causes include age-related macular degeneration of the retina. But what effect it has on the eyes of children has not been previously studied.
“We found that secondhand smoke in children was associated with thinning of the choroid, the lining of the eye that contains many blood vessels,” Yam said. He added that the greater the exposure to smoke, the more pronounced this effect was.
The study covered 1400 children aged 6-8 years. Scientists measured the thickness of the choroid using coherent optical tomography.
Comparing the scans of the eyes of children exposed to secondhand smoke with the scans of children not exposed to it, the authors found that the choroid in children in the first group was, on average, thinner by 6-8 micrometers.
The researchers insist that their data underscores the importance of protecting children from secondhand smoke.
Dr. Erin Walsh, co-director of the pediatric ophthalmology department at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York, told Reuters that there is little information on how passive and even direct smoking affects children's eyesight. Importantly, until the age of 12, the optic pathways are still developing.
“There is no doubt that cigarette smoking is an important risk factor for systemic and vascular disease,” said Dr. Fernando Arevalo of Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.