Doctors are now looking to highlight the issue
Doctors are warning about the damage looking at smartphones could do to our vision if we check them whilst in bed. The warning comes as details emerge about two women who went temporarily blind as a result of checking their phones in the dark.
Doctors published details of the cases in the New England Journal of Medicine. The two women went temporarily blind as a result of constantly checking their device at night. The doctors are looking to alert others to the new phenomenon.
The women, aged 22 and 40, experienced "transient smartphone blindness" for months. They complained of recurring episodes of vision loss for up to 15 minutes at a time. They underwent extensive testing, but could not find anything medically wrong with them to explain the symptoms.
The mystery was solved after they went to an eye specialist.
“I simply asked them, 'What exactly were you doing when this happened?'” recalled Dr Gordon Plant of Moorfield's Eye Hospital in London.
Dr Plant discovered that both women typically looked at their smartphones with one eye closed, whilst lying on their side in the dark.
“So you have one eye adapted to the light because it's looking at the phone and the other eye is adapted to the dark,” he explained.
Dr Rahul Khurana, a spokesman for the American Academy of Ophthalmology, called it a fascinating hypothesis but said two cases weren't enough to prove that one-eyed smartphone use in the dark caused the problem.