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February 23, 2014

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Smartphone leads to detached retina

DOCTORS have said that spending hours peering at a smartphone in the dark every day led to a woman in east China’s Zhejiang Province suffering a detached retina.

The woman, surnamed Liu, had noticed that the vision in her right eye had been cloudy and distorted over past last week.

Liu said she spends two to three hours on average looking at her phone in a darkened room.

“When the doctor covered my left eye, everything I saw with my right was distorted. Rectangular objects become elliptical,” she said.

The doctor who treated Liu said she had suffered a partial retina detachment and blamed this on using a smartphone in the dark.

Zhao Bingkun, an ophthalmologist in Zhejiang, said long hours staring at a bright screen in the dark can cause the ciliary muscle to overcontract.

This affects its ability to accommodate changes in the lens when viewing objects at varying distances.

Retina detachment can lead to blindness, and ophthalmologists are seeing a growing number of patients suffering from the condition.

This trend is attributed to users staring at the screens of computers and handsets for too long without a break.

A man in southeast China’s Fujian Province who spent 10 hours each day running a shop at online marketplace Taobao lost vision in his right eye in November.

In a country increasingly obsessed with staying wired, health professionals have urged the sensible use of smartphones and tablets, telling users to take frequent screen breaks.


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