Myopia Progression

Many young people have the unnerving experience of having their eye-glasses prescription go up every time they go to the eye doctor. This phenomenon is known as myopia progression. Myopia is commonly called nearsightedness.

Not only does myopia progression mean increased inconvenience as the patient's vision worsens and thicker or more expensive lenses, high myopia puts a patient at risk of serious eye diseases that may result in blindness. Therefore, any treatment that can slow or stop the progression of myopia is welcome.

the myopia epidemicOrthokeratology has been shown to stop or slow the progression of myopia in a number of studies, which are listed to the right.

The dangers of myopia

Myopia and the eye disorders that arise when myopia progresses can cause abnormal or adverse changes in a patient's eyes. Myopia causes abnormal stretching or elongation of the eye which may induce cause thinning and weakening of the retina (the thin membrane at the back of the eye that contains the cells that send visual information to the brain). This elongation may pull on the vitreous (the gel substance that fills the eye) which in turn pulls on the retina. This process may result in a detatched retina - a medical emergency that requires immediate attention and often surgery. Retinal detatchments often lead to blindness.

There is a second mechanism whereby the elongating process associated with myopia can cause blindness. Elongation can also cause "lattice-like" holes to form in the peripheral retina. These holes provide a passage way for fluid to seep under the retina. That fluid has been known to lift the retina and often cause it to detatch. As in the previous example, this process too can result in total blindness in the affected eye.

Glaucoma is another problem faced by myopic individuals. Moderate to highly myopic people are twice as likely to develop glaucoma. (Mitchell 2000). Glaucoma causes permanent vision loss if it is not diagnosed and treated early. It sneaks up on the victim because it causes no pain and moves so gradually that the victim usually does not know that they have already lost portions of their peripheral vision. An eye doctor's comprehensive eye examination is the only way to to catch glaucoma before it does permanent damage.

The myopia epidemic


focus on the cornea

Focus on: Studies show that orthokeratology can stop myopia progression

Recent Orthokeratology reserach news:

Which children benefit the most from the orthokeratology treatment for myopia progression? New study has the answers.
September 28, 2013

Orthokeratology slows or stops the progression of myopia in children
July 6, 2013

Study suggests that young children may benefit from orthokeratology
February 14, 2013

New study confirms orthokeratology for slowing myopia progression
January 30, 2013

Orthokeratology is shown to be safe for correcting myopia in chidlren
Aug 11, 2012

Orthokeratology is shown to be effective in correcting astigmatism and myopia
Jun 18, 2012

New study supports orthokeratology for myopia control and for astigmatism correction
Jan 10, 2012

Laser eye sugery makes you queasy? Orthokeratology is a safe and effective alternative 
Jun 09, 2011

The myopia epidemic: why it is so dangerous. - See For Life
Oct 12, 2011.

The studies that address myopic progression and Ortho-K are Reim, LORIC, CRAYON, SMART, MCOS and CRIMP.

REIM (2003). Tom Reim OD,FOAA and colleagues first reported the potential of myopia control in 2003 with a retrospective study that reported that corneal reshaping experienced about a sixty percent reduction in myopic progression.

LORIC (2005). The Longitudinal Orthokeratology Research in Children(LORIC) study was conducted in Asia, and found a much slower rate of myopia and axial elongation(47%) among young progressive myopes who underwent corneal reshaping compared to those who wore eyeglasses.

CRAYON (2007). The Corneal Reshaping and Yearly Observation of nearsightedness(CRAYON) study, conducted by Jeff Walline OD,FAAO at Ohio State University, also found lower rates of myopia progression and axial elongation(57%)(Walline, 2008).

SMART in progress. Both the LORIC and CRAYON studies were small in scale involving fewer then forty patients. The Stabilization of Myopia by Accelerated Reshaping Technique(SMART) study, a large scale(300 patient),five year longitudinal, multicenter evaluation of the effectiveness of corneal reshaping for young progressive myopes is now underway. First year results are encouraging (Eiden et al,2009).

CRIMP(2010) . Corneal reshaping inhibits myopia progression(CRIMP) is a ten year retrospective study out of Australia that demonstrated control of myopia progression over a ten year time frame. Fully 70% of all participants in the corneal reshaping control group did not progress in degree of myopia over the period studied.

MCOS in progress. " The Myopia Control with Orthokeratology contact lenses in Spain (MCOS) Study, in which continued documentation of safety outcomes for corneal reshaping in a pediatric population was evident by no changes in best-corrected visual acuity or significant adverse health effects from ortho-k wear" (Gregory,2010).