Vision Loss in the Workplace: How it Happens, and What to Do

An injury to the eye can impact your vision, even causing you to suffer blindness in serious cases. If you work with toxic chemicals, heavy machinery or materials, or in any type of workplace where you are exposed to projectile objects, always wear properly-fitting safety goggles in the workplace. If you are exposed to excessively bright lights in your workplace, wear protective goggles that keep the dangerous light waves from reaching your eyes.

If you do suffer an eye injury in the workplace, seek medical attention for the injury as soon as possible. Wash the eye out with water thoroughly to remove the substance or particle that entered the eye. If you are a covered employee, you can file a workers’ compensation claim to seek compensation for your medical expenses and lost wages.

Parts of the Eye

The human eye is quite complex. Multiple parts work together to provide you with vision and if one of these parts is injured, you can suffer vision loss or become completely blind.

The cornea is the clear area at the front of the eye. Light enters the eye through the cornea. The light is then focused through the vitreous humor, a gel-like substance that fills the eye’s interior.

Before light reaches the retina, it passes through the iris, which adjusts the size of the pupil to allow an appropriate level of light to reach the retina. Other interior parts of the eye, such as the eye’s crystalline lens, focus the light that enters the eye to allow for depth perception and accuracy.

The retina is in the back area of the eyeball. The retina receives images from the cornea and transforms them into electrical impulses felt by the brain, allowing the brain to interpret what the eye sees. Between the retina and the brain is the optic nerve, which transmits signals collected through the eyes to the portion of the brain that controls sight. This portion of the brain is known as the visual cortex.

Injuries to the Eye

When the eyes suffer trauma in an accident or exposure to toxic chemicals in the workplace, they can suffer injuries. Examples of eye injuries that can occur in the workplace include:

  • Corneal abrasions, which are scratches on the cornea
  • Foreign objects or substances in the eye, such as acid. This can cause burning, redness, pain, and if the object is a solid or sharp object, bleeding; and
  • Eye strain. This is the discomfort an individual can feel after intense eye use, such as a prolonged period of time working at a computer. Although eye strain is not permanent, it can be painful.

Work with a New York City Loss of Vision Lawyer

Losing your vision can change your life. If you experience vision loss or any other type of eye injury or ocular condition as a result of an accident in your workplace, work with an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer to file your workers’ compensation claim. Contact The Law Offices of Robert A. Koenigsberg to schedule your initial consultation in our office.

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