“We know that Santa’s lead reindeer can navigate the sleigh through the worst of foggy conditions,” he says. “Surely Rudolph would have seen Grandma since his nose can light up an entire neighborhood. Also, Santa is a very reliable driver and wouldn’t break the law by texting and driving at the same time.”

According to Drew Stoken, MD, president of the Pennsylvania Academy of Ophthalmology, there’s no evidence that Santa’s vision played a role in the hit-and-run.

“Santa’s been around for years, and gets an annual eye exam,” says Dr. Stoken, who practices in Carlisle, PA. “He may wear glasses to read, but otherwise he has pretty good eyesight.”


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Dr. Stoken knows exactly how well Santa sees. In fact, the Pennsylvania Academy of Ophthalmologists are the official ophthalmologists for the North Pole.

“I can’t go into specifics because of HIPAA,” says Dr. Stoken, “but trust me, his vision meets the requirements to drive a vehicle.”

Dr. Stoken says the example Santa sets with eye care is one that others should follow.

“At Santa’s age (1,744 years in 2014) it’s important to get an annual eye exam. This is also the recommendation for anyone over the age of 60,” Dr. Stoken stresses. “We often think the annual eye exam is just to determine a prescription for eyeglasses or contact lens, but an ophthalmologist will also look for early signs of many ocular diseases such as macular degeneration, glaucoma, and cataracts as well as systemic diseases including hypertension (high blood pressure), cancer, diabetes, sickle cell anemia, and arthritis.”

Dr. Stoken does note that Santa could be at risk of diabetes due to his weight. Downing too many cookies on his rounds along with the stress of the holidays could lead to hyperglycemia and blurred vision, which could account for Grandma’s unfortunate demise. However, there was no sign of diabetes during his last eye exam.