Vision Loss  /  Future Human Burden

More than 38 million Americans age 40 and older are blind, visually impaired, or have an age-related eye disease, and adult vision loss costs our economy more than billion a year. With major advances in vision research bringing new prevention and treatments, it is critical that support for research and incentives for innovation remain a priority. The Alliance for Aging Research has teamed up with the Alliance for Eye and Vision Research (AEVR) during their Decade of Vision, to release Volume II of The Silver Book®:Vision Loss. Volume II brings updated data on vision loss in older Americans, as well as the exciting changes and discoveries in vision research and treatment.  

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    • Between 2015 and 2050, the number of people who are legally blind is projected to increase by 21% each decade.
       
    • The number of people in the U.S. with visual impairment or blindness is expected to double to more than 8 million by 2050.
       
    • Future Impact of DR
      The rise of DR will disproportionately impacting the poorest populations, since 80% of people with diabetes live in low-middle income countries.  
    • People Affected Worldwide by DR
      By 2030, more than 191 million people around the world will be affected by DR—56 million with vision-threatening DR.  
    • An estimated 2.3 million Americans 40 and older currently have glaucoma. That number is expected to grow by 50% to 3.36 million by 2020.  
    • The number of Americans age 65 and older with diabetic retinopathy is projected to close to quadruple between 2005 and 2050–increasing from 2.5 million to 9.9 million.  The number of…  
    • The number of Americans age 40 and older with diabetic retinopathy is projected to triple between 2005 and 2050–increasing from 5.5 million to 16 million.  The number of people age…  
    • The number of cases of early age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is projected to increase from 9.1 million in 2010 to 17.8 million in 2050.  
    • The number of cases of visual impairment and blindness from age-related macular degeneration (AMD0 is projected to increase from 620,000 in 2010 to 1.6 million in 2050–assuming no treatments.  
    • An estimated 4.1 million Americans currently have diabetic retinopathy. That number is expected to grow to 7.2 million by 2020.  
    • An estimated 1.75 million Americans currently have age-related macular degeneration (AMD). That number is expected to grow to 2.95 million by 2020. * Note that an additional 7.3 million currently…  
    • By 2020, the number of Americans age 40 and older who are blind is projected to reach 1.6 million– growing 70% from 1 million in 2004.  
    • By 2020, the number of Americans age 40 and older with low vision is projected to reach 3.9 million– growing from 2.4 million in 2004.  
    • By 2020, the number of Americans age 40 and older who are blind or have low vision is projected to reach 5.5 million– growing from 3.3 million in 2004.  
    • Currently an estimated 38 million Americans suffer from blindness, low vision, or an age-related eye disease. That number is expected to grow to around 50 million by 2020.