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What Medicine Can Learn From Doctors And Researchers With Disabilities
National Public Radio

Bonnielin Swenor has devoted her life to studying visual impairment in older adults. But for a long time, she didn’t often discuss the motivation fueling her work — that she herself has low vision.

Swenor, an assistant professor of ophthalmology at the Wilmer Eye Institute at Johns Hopkins University, has myopic macular degeneration, a condition that leaves her with extremely limited vision. Basic tasks exhaust her visual processing power, so she has to manage her time with precision. This hasn’t stopped her from having a prolific career as a researcher and epidemiologist. But until recently, she rarely discussed her disability with her peers; she worried that they would judge or dismiss her.