Tag Archives: papilledema

Blurred vision a risk for astronauts who spend months in space

Blurred vision is now considered a serious risk for astronauts who spend months in space.

According to one NASA survey of about 300 astronauts, nearly 30 percent of those who have flown on space shuttle missions – which usually lasted two weeks — and 60 percent who’ve completed six-month shifts aboard the station reported a gradual blurring of eyesight.

This story is a followup on information contained in an earlier National Academies report on astronaut staffing.

The dangerous environment of space

A just released report from the National Academies, Preparing for the High Frontier: the role and training of NASA astronauts in the post-space shuttle era, describes the challenges that NASA faces in staffing its astronaut corps in the coming years. More important, however, is some new information buried in the report about the hazards of long term exposure to weightlessness.

For example, it seems a significant number of astronauts have come back from spending months at ISS with serious vision problems, caused by a newly discovered condition dubbed papilledema, the swelling of the optic disk.
» Read more