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Question:
I was stationed in northern France with the U.S. Air Force from 1958 to 1960. I was sent on details to Germany, Norway, Italy and other parts of France, which all had their share of bombing during WW II. As a result, I met several young airmen with eye problems. My eye problems are still present with me. Can lingering heavy bombardment radiation cause eye problems in very young men?

Answer:
Exposure to high amounts of ionizing radiation from nuclear weapons can cause retinal problems and can increase the likelihood of cataract formation. However, most radiation from bombardment occurred in those Japanese cities that were destroyed by atomic bombs at the end of World War II. "Conventional" weapons, which do not emit ionizing radiation, were used on the European battlegrounds, so exposure to lingering radiation is unlikely in the countries to which you were assigned.

Answered by: Lee Duffner, MD Dr. Lee Duffner

Categories: General Eye Health

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Answered: Aug 07, 2012

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