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 present, glaucoma is the leading cause of blindness in the United
 States. illl it is estimated that glaucoma is responsible for
 visual impairment in approximately one.million Americans_ !l_/
 Glaucoma affects approximately one out of every I00 persons in
 the general population. _I// An estimated 150,000 to 300,000 new
 cases of glaucoma are diagnosed each year, _/_/ and between 7,000
 & i0_000 Americans are blinded by the disease each year. _15/
 Research suggests subgroups within the general population are
 more frequently affected by glaucoma° For example, the disease
 appears to involve heredity in ways that are only dimly
 understood. _-I_/
 Ethnic background also plays a role in glaucoma demo-
 graphics. It is estimated that glaucomas occur much more
 _iI/ Affidavit of Dr. John Merritt, _ 9_
 __12d _9__ACT Official State Repor%s_ Vol. If, Exhibit i0, New
 Jersey Glaucoma Protocol at 10, (quoting #Fact Sheet: Marijuana
 & Glaucoma, _ c_ _ °
 16_ .1978t at i).
 __i._/ /_. (quoting wVision Research: A National Plan: 1979-
 1982_ _ 'lg_ort of_nai_A_Y!_q_LEve Council, at
 414/ /_. (quoting _Facts & Fiqp/res", The National Society to
 Prevent Blindness, 1980)_
 4_15_/ _o_ at (_Snm_ary and Critique of Available Data on the
 Prevalence and Economic and Social Costs of Visual Disorders and
 Disabilities, = 1976).
 • I__/ ACT Official State Reportse Vole IX, Exhibit 10 at 9
 (quoted from Glaucoma The National Eyo Institute, National
 Institutes of Health, Public Health Service, Washington, D.C_
 November, 1979 at I).

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