Eye disorders – Rising occupational hazard for traffic police

Long hours under the direct glare of the sun, prolonged exposure to UV rays and pollution have led to increased eye disorders in our traffic police personnel. A recent comprehensive eye check up for 600 traffic police, in association with the National Institute of Ophthalmology (NIO), Pune, threw some startling results. While 75 policemen were diagnosed with refractive error, 18 were found to have cataract and 56 had ocular surface diseases.

Dr. Aditya Kelkar, surgeon at NIO eyes said that high pollution and harsh sunlight increased the occurrence of the dry eye syndrome, while the UV rays reflected from the footpaths in harsh sunlight could burn the surface of the eye. However he assured that several of these problems could be cured with necessary precautionary measures. Using sunglasses, maintaining proper eye hygiene and getting the eyes regularly checked could even prevent a lot of problems from occurring, he said. Very often, people are not aware of the problem or its gravity and tend to neglect the symptoms. However, periodic eye checkups would be very helpful.

Speaking about the success of the check up camp where he participated along with other experts from NIO, Dr. Kelkar said that 75 policemen who were found to have a refractive error were prescribed spectacles, 18 were advised cataract surgery and 56 with ocular surface disorders were prescribed goggles as well as medication to cure the condition.

Deputy Commissioner of Police (Traffic) Mr. Sarang Awad said that 700 more of their staff would also undergo a similar check up. This is a welcome step taken by the Traffic Police department. Regular checkups would be followed in the future for the welfare of the traffic police.
Dr. Kelkar’s blog