The effect of sunglasses on ocular exposure to ultraviolet radiation

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Pharmacology

Publication Date


Document Type



Eye; Eye Protective Devices; Eyeglasses; Humans; Manikins; Protective Devices; *Sunlight; *Ultraviolet Rays


Life Sciences | Medicine and Health Sciences


Thirty-two pairs of inexpensive sunglasses were examined for their effectiveness in preventing ultraviolet radiation (UVR) from reaching the eyes. The transmission of UVB (290-310 nm) by all of the sunglass lenses was less than 2 per cent. However, in measurements performed with mannikins wearing the sunglasses, up to 14.1 per cent of the incident UVR passed through to the eyes. When the sunglasses were moved 6 mm from the forehead, the per cent reaching the eyes ranged from 3.7 to 44.8 per cent. Although sunglasses are somewhat more effective than untinted prescription eyewear in attenuating ocular exposure, the amount of attenuation is highly variable and depends mainly on their size, shape, and wearing position.


Am J Public Health. 1988 Jan;78(1):72-4.

Journal/Book/Conference Title

American journal of public health

Related Resources

Link to article in PubMed

PubMed ID