Trans4mind Home Page
~ A Journey of Self-Discovery ~

Explore Article Library


Seeing Color: Genetic and Acquired Color Vision Deficiencies

By Arlene Evans

Jim Doane was humiliated when he passed the ball to a member of the opposing team with the red jerseys instead of to his own team with the green jerseys. His team lost. He said he had a short-lived career in high school as a fry cook because he couldn't tell when the meat was cooked. He wanted to be a physician, but was told that career was closed to him, so he went into engineering instead. Now retired, Doane enjoys flying, but his license is limited to daylight hours because he can't tell red from green.

Doane isn't alone. Among the most common of genetic disorders, color vision deficiency (CVD), or colorblindness (so named although these people are not "blind to color), is present in about eight percent of men and O.5 percent of women, frequently those of European descent. However, CVD is present in all races and nationalities, ranging in intensity from mild to severe.

A person who is mildly affected may assume he has typical color vision until he takes a test to detect the disorder. Many men who wanted to be fighter pilots during World War II were shocked not to pass the color vision test. This has also happened to people who apply for other jobs that require accurate color vision.

People who are moderately affected may notice problems in everyday activities, like matching socks or discriminating the colors of the rainbow. An office worker may be confused by a color-coded filing system. In addition, language is full of expressions that may have little meaning for those with CVD. Nancy Miller, one of the 0.5 percent of affected women, said, "You don't realize how often people say things like, "Look at the pretty green sweater." She wanted to be an interior decorator but realized that goal was impossible because of her color vision. She went into drafting instead so she could work with black and white.

Like two percent of the male population (and a rare female), Jim Doane has a severe color vision deficiency. He has gotten into a wrong car and had to explain that to the police. "Then there are the speeding tickets in the Mustang due to the red speedometer needle on the green background, he said. (He admitted he wasn't completely innocent.)

CVD is commonly referred to as "red-green colorblindness, because these colors are commonly confused. Often, they are also confused with other colors such as gray. Purple and blue typically appear the same because people with CVD don't see the red in purple. Green is often confused with tan and brown.

CVD is a sex-linked recessive disorder. It is carried on the X chromosome. A male has an X and a Y chromosome and a female has two X chromosomes. When a male inherits an affected X, he will be affected because, unlike a female, he doesn't have an unaffected X to dominate the affected X. Because a male always passes his Y chromosome to his sons, he does not pass CVD to his sons; he does, however, pass his X to his daughters, who are then "carriers." Carriers typically don't have symptoms. A woman has a 50 percent chance of passing her affected X on to each of her children. The females who inherit the X will, like their mothers, be carriers; the males who inherit the affected X will, like their maternal grandfathers, have CVD. A female must inherit an affected X from each parent in order to be affected herself.

Deficiencies in color vision can also be acquired. Aging can produce subtle changes in color vision. The most common color change results from the development of cataracts, or "foggy lenses in the eye, which interfere with visual acuity and color vision, making some colors dull, especially blue and yellow. After having cataract surgery where a foggy lens is removed and replaced with an artificial lens, people commonly comment that everything appears more colorful.

Seniors are also more likely to take medications that may distort or reduce color vision. Blue-yellow color vision can be altered by certain medications used in seizure control and other medications used to treat heart ailments and arthritis. Aspirin and quinine can affect red-red color vision, as can some drugs used in the treatment of psychosis. Rarely, color vision may be adversely affected by trauma, such as a blow on the head.

Although acquired color vision deficiencies can sometimes be medically treated, there is nothing available to effectively treat inherited CVD. Colored lenses are available that may help colorize the world of some people with reduced color vision. The X-Chrom lens, a red contact lens worn in one eye, helps some people tell red from green, which is important in some jobs. Those who are interested in trying specialty lenses should check with their eye care professionals.

An avid bicyclist, Jim Doane is presently involved in re-doing his city's bicycle map. It's unreadable for him because of the colors used. That should keep him busy at night when he isn't flying.

About The Author
Arlene Evans was a school nurse for many years; during that time she searched unsuccessfully for literature for children and teens on this common genetic disorder, so she wrote Seeing Color: It's My Rainbow, Too for children and Color is in the Eye of the Beholder for teens and adults. Her Web site is: www.CVDbooks.com.


AND EXPLORE...

Addictions
Astrology
Careers & Employment
Communication
Creativity
Dating
Depression
Diabetes
Diets
Divorce
Education
Environment
Ethics
Exercise
Family
Goal-Setting
Grief & Loss
Happiness
Health
Kids & Teens
Leadership
Love
Marriage
Meditation
Nutrition
Organizing
Parenting
Psychology
Public Speaking
Relationships
Schools
Self Help
Self Improvement & Motivation
Sexual Relations
Spirituality
Stress Management
Travel and Leisure
Women
Writing


From our extensive site, you'll find good info on many topics using this search:

Want to renew your life?

Our online, interactive video workshops present the most effective methods of holistic personal development...
Start off with a Free Life Assessment and a Free Consultation...
 

Have a question about Trans4mind Training?

Frequently Asked Questions
What Are Our Fees?
Email Peter Shepherd

Support your personal development with these popular and effective hypnosis downloads...

This is our selection of favorites, but there's a session for every need! Choose from over 800 Hypnosis Downloads...
Search now on an issue that interests or concerns you...
 

Welcome to the New Wave in Meditation Technology

Click here to learn more about the iAwake Profound Meditation Program
The iAwake Profound Meditation Program
is a way of enhancing your meditation practice, making meditation not only easier and more enjoyable, but also more efficient and effective.
Profound Meditation provides the smoothest, deepest, richest, most profound meditation experience available anywhere...
Here is a link to a free 20-minute track from iAwake Technologies - a sample of the type of tools that will deepen your meditation immediately and help you quickly become a successful meditator. It's the opening track of iAwake's flagship product, the Profound Meditation Program, called the iAwake Experience...
Learn More and Download the iAwake Experience
We think you'll find this technology a tremendous aid on your transformative journey of becoming your best and most creative self - and you can get started today!
And here's a fantastic resource for self-education...

The World of Inspiration eLibrary

World of Inspiration
A treasure trove of personal development wisdom

Step inside. Just like a real library, there are thousands of quality eBooks presented on three "floors" and in different "rooms." To purchase your $15 Lifetime Membership to the World of Inspiration eLibrary, click the following button:

Payment is made through our secure transaction agent, PayPal.
The transaction is in the language and currency of your choice.
"I want to just say 'WOW!' This collection is probably the best money I ever spent! I've already received many times over in personal enrichment after just 9 days. I've had a past metaphysical background, but even newcomers to this material will really benefit. Thanks again." ~ J.S. (Pennsylvania, USA)
"The collection is everything which you promised. And more! A superb contribution to the good of the world. Many thanks indeed." ~ R.P. (Georgia, USA)
"Just a short note of thanks for the library. I've only had membership for several days now but I already feel this is perhaps the most interesting compilation I have yet seen. Worth far more than the price of admission. The browser linked structure works well and makes it easy to manage such a large storehouse of information. It is rarely that I find something I like as much as this or that I feel strongly enough to write a note like this." ~ P.W. (Minnesota, USA)
Copyright © 1997-2016 Trans4mind Ltd