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Did you know these 20 celebrities have impaired vision?


From movie stars to professional athletes, these famous people do not let their visual impairments hold them back.

1. Ronald Reagan 

Reagan was diagnosed with myopia. To learn about how his visual impairment affected him, click here.

More: Top 10 U.S. eye-healthy cities


2. Jorge Luis Borges 

The famous Argentinian writer had a public lecture on blindness in 1977 in which he stated the irony of being given honors for his written work at the same time his doctor informed him that he would soon be too blind to write on his own. He had cataracts and a series of failed eye procedures.

Recent: AD-IOLs mimic movement of natural lens


3. Johnny Depp 

Depp acknowledged that he has suffered from vision issues from early on in his life, saying he can barely see from his left eye.

Recent: How to choose a subspecialty in ophthalmology


4. Galileo Galilei 

The most probable causes of Galilei's blindness were cataracts and glaucoma.

Recent: Glaucoma micro-stent’s 2-year data promising


5. Casey Harris

Born blind, Harris is the keyboardist for the band "X Ambassadors."

After-hours: DJ ophthalmologists in surgery by day, mixing music by night


6. Homer 

Along with Homer's debated existance-or lack thereof-is a question as to whether blindness was also an impairment he struggled with in his old age.

Recent: NASEM declares eye health a public health imperative


7. James Joyce  

Joyce had severe eye pain for the second half of his life. He had multiple surgeries to try to alleviate the pain, which may have caused his blindness.

Related: What books are your fellow ophthalmologists reading?


8. Helen Keller 

Keller was blind and deaf since she was less than 2 years old. Despite this, she is one of the most well known women's writers of the century.

After-hours: Famous artist, ophthalmologist team up so children can see ‘brighter’


9. Harper Lee

The writer of this classic text was partially blind and deaf, but said that her vision impairment was not the reason she stopped writing. Instead, she said it was because she said all that she wanted to say. 

Recent: 6 lessons to take away from the presidential race


10. Allan Pineda Lindo, Jr.

Allan Pineda Lindo Jr., also known as apl.de.ap., is a member of the band "The Black Eyed Peas" who has nystagmus.

Blog: How your nonverbal cues may be choking your practice


11. Claude Monet 

The famous artist was pronounced blind in 1922, at which point he lost the ability to distinguish colors in his paintings.

Blog: Is the world a better place because of your practice?


12. Horatio Nelson 

The saying "turn a blind eye" was first attributed to Nelson as he used his partial blindness to his advantage in some combats, saying that he didn't see a signal which meant to call his soldiers off from attacking the enemy.

Editorial: How long will you live?


13. Dr. Abraham Nemeth 

Dr. Nemeth, who was born blind, developed a system in 1952 for blind people to read and write mathematics called the Nemeth Braille Code for Mathematics and Science Notation. The abacus, pictured above, was an instrument some people with visual impairments also use for counting.

Editorial: Why pediatric ophthalmologists don't go to late night parties


14. Joseph Pulitzer 

Pulitzer went blind in 1889.

Editorial: Dopamine: My drug of choice


15. Franklin Roosevelt  

As a result of Roosevelt's paralytic illness, he experienced blurry vision which he feared would lead to blindness. Roosevelt's fifth cousin, Theodore, also experienced myopia. To learn more, click here.

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16. Dr. Jacob Bolotin

Dr. Bolotin was the first congenitally blind person to become fully licensed to practice medicine. Dr. Bolotin passed at the early age of 36 in 1924, but there is an annual award given by the National Federation of the Blind in his honor.



17. Marla Runyan  

Runyan is a well-known blind marathon runner who has competed in multiple Olympics and Para-Olympic games, winning mutiple gold medals.

Editorial: An ophthalmologist’s experience with tele-medicine


18. James Thurber  

Thurber was well-known as a cartoonist who was often featured in The New Yorker Magazine. He also wrote the original story for "The Secret Life of Walter Mitty," which was adapted into a second movie featuring Ben Stiller in 2013.

Recent: Are we ophthalmologists in the eye of the storm?


19. Harriet Tubman 

A hero to countless slaves, Tubman was struck on the head, causing her vision impairment and multiple seizures. Still, she did not let this stop her determination to free slaves in the Underground Railroad.

Recent: 10 highlights from AAO 2016


20. Tiger Woods 

The famous golf professional had LASIK surgery twice to remedy his extreme myopia. He would also experience frequent headaches from his contstant squinting.


More: Did you know these 7 men were ophthalmologists?



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