By the numbers

A stocktake of science and vision stories in 2018

Calendar and count down timer

There is that moment, after the festive calendar countdown, the Christmas meal’s arithmetic of potatoes, sprouts and turkey and the chorus of voices marking the final seconds of 2018, that people sit back and take a moment to cast their gaze over the year that has been.

How does 2018 account for itself? Here is my own, idiosyncratic stocktake of the numbers that featured in science and vision stories in 2018.

5000: the number of NHS type 2 diabetes patients who will be prescribed an 800-calorie daily diet of soup and smoothies after a study found that it helped patients to achieve remission from the disease.

46%: the heightened risk of developing strabismus in children whose mothers smoked during pregnancy

Three-fold: the increase in acanthamoeba keratitis cases in South East England since 2011, according to research by Moorfields Eye Hospital

600: the number of different species that had their vision analysed as part of a study that saw researchers develop software to show how different animals see the world around them.

30-seconds: how long artificial intelligence technology developed by US, German and Chinese researchers takes to decide whether someone should be referred for age-related macular degeneration. The algorithm is 95% accurate.

50%: the increased likelihood of developing cataracts among asthma and hay fever sufferers according to research published in The Journal of Dermatology.

14: the number of worms found in an Oregon horse riding enthusiast’s eye. She is the first known human to host Thelazia gulosa — a worm previously only found in cattle

And although not strictly a statistic from 2018, 100: the number of hours of CET content that will be on offer at 100% Optical this weekend. We hope to see you there! 

Image credit: Getty