Higher sun ex­po­sure may in­crease risk of eye freck­les

Hindustan Times (Patna) - Live - - Lifestyle -

Higher life­time ex­po­sure to sun­light may in­crease the risk of de­vel­op­ing eye freck­les or dark spots on the coloured part of the eye (iris), re­searchers warned.

The find­ings showed that eye freck­les could in­di­cate the pres­ence or risk of sun­light-trig­gered eye dis­eases like cataract or mac­u­lar de­gen­er­a­tion.

Fur­ther, the de­vel­op­ment of eye freck­les also cor­re­lated with in­creas­ing age, life­time num­ber of sun­burns and a his­tory of se­vere sun­burns re­sult­ing in blis­ters, the re­searchers re­ported.

“While we do not know the ex­act role of sun­light in sev­eral eye dis­eases, we now have a biomarker (iris freck­les) in­di­cat­ing high amounts of chronic sun­light ex­po­sure,” said Christoph Sch­wab, oph­thal­mol­o­gist at the Med­i­cal Univer­sity of Graz in Aus­tria.

In ad­di­tion, peo­ple with dark-coloured eyes were found less likely to have eye freck­les, as well as those who main­tained bet­ter sun pro­tec­tion habits like us­ing sun­screen or cov­er­ing up.

For the study, pub­lished in the jour­nal In­ves­tiga­tive Oph­thal­mol­ogy & Vis­ual Sci­ence, over 600 swim­mers at pub­lic pools in Styria, Aus­tria, had their eyes ex­am­ined for freck­les and filled out a ques­tion­naire that asked about their life­time sun ex­po­sure and sun-pro­tec­tion habits.

Re­searchers also found that freck­les were most com­monly found in the lower outer quad­rant (away from the nose) of each eye.

This may be be­cause the eye­brow and nose shield the up­per and in­ner quad­rants of the eye from the sun, low­er­ing ex­po­sure and the risk of de­vel­op­ing freck­les, Sch­wab ex­plained.

PEO­PLE WITH DARKCOLOURED EYES WERE FOUND LESS LIKELY TO HAVE EYE FRECK­LES, AS WELL AS THOSE WHO MAIN­TAINED BET­TER SUN PRO­TEC­TION HABITS

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