Tel: 847-362-9900

 

MYOPIC PROGRESSION: WHY IS IT IMPORTANT?
Are your child’s eyes getting worse year after year?

According to a study done in the United States, currently 42% of the population is affected by myopia (near-sightedness). In East Asian countries, it is estimated that almost 90% of the population is myopic. The prevalence of myopia is much higher today than even just 30 years ago and at the current rates, it is estimated that by the year 2050, 100% of the population will be myopic!

 

Factors that contribute to myopia progression are still being studied, but they are believed to be a combination of two main factors:

Genetics: if both parents are myopic, their children are more susceptible to becoming myopic. If one parent is highly myopic (greater than -3.00DS), their child has a greater likelihood of becoming a high myope as well.

Near work vs. time spent outdoors: children today spend much more time indoors and on digital devices than in years past. More children are straining their eyes with increased near work and spending less time outdoors doing distance tasks.

 

 

WHY IS NEARSIGHTEDNESS A BIG DEAL?
Those with higher myopia, or a nearsighted prescription at or
greater than-5.00DS are at higher risk for:

Posterior subcapsular cataracts
Glaucoma
Myopic maculopathy
Retinal detachment

 

WHAT CAN BE DONE? ORTHOKERATOLOGY!                                                                                                            

Orthokeratology slows the progression of myopia by correcting central refractive error and maintaining peripheral blur. Peripheral blur allows for the eyes to focus on the immediate task while doing near work, but reduces extra eye strain that could occur with increased accommodative stress. The lenses also essentially act to decrease axial length (or eye elongation), which is a factor associated with myopia progression. These lenses have been shown to be more effective at slowing down myopia than single vision soft contact lenses, RGP hard contact lenses or spectacles.

In fact, orthokeratology contact lenses have been shown to have as much as a 77% reduction rate in myopia progression!

There are other options for myopia control such as multifocal eyeglasses, multifocal soft contact lenses and prescription eye drops. However, each of these treatment modalities are less effective at reducing progression and have other notable side effects. At this time, orthokeratology is considered to be the most effective treatment for myopia progression. All of our ortho-k lenses are custom built to fit each patient.

 

If you are interested in orthokeratology for yourself or a family member, give our office a call at 847-362-9900 to schedule a consultation in coordination with your annual exam. Drs. Pak and Santilukka are fitting and evaluating patients for Emerald™ Orthokeratology lenses.