It has been just over a week since a total solar eclipse passed through the continental United States from Oregon to South Carolina and many local eye care clinics are pleased to report they have seen no cases of solar retinopathy. Symptoms of solar retinopathy, which is caused by extended viewing of the sun, include sensitivity to light, blurred vision, distortion or blind spots. Several factors played a significant role in reducing the number of reported cases. The large amount of public interest in the Aug. 21 eclipse led to an increased awareness of its hazards, cloud cover during the peak time decreased viewership and the prevalence of alternate viewing methods resulted in fewer people looking at the sun without eye protection. According to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), an estimated 40 million people viewed the eclipse through the agency’s website alone.
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