Patient Education

Health Library

Our Health Library information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Please be advised that this information is made available to assist our patients to learn more about their health. Our providers may not see and/or treat all topics found herein.

Cataracts and Ultraviolet Light

Skip to the navigation

Topic Overview

Ultraviolet (UV) radiation, such as sunlight, is absorbed by the lens of the eye. It can cause chemicals called free radicals to form inside the lens. Over time, free radicals may damage the lens. This can cause cataracts.

Some people are exposed to too much sunlight and may be more likely to form cataracts. This can be because of their profession, such as agricultural workers. It may be because of where they live, such as in sunny parts of the country. Or it may be because they use tanning booths or sunlamps.

It is not known for sure whether reducing UV exposure helps prevent cataracts.

Related Information

Credits

ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer Carol L. Karp, MD - Ophthalmology

Current as ofMarch 3, 2017

Current as of: March 3, 2017

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. Learn how we develop our content.

© 1995-2017 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.