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What is myopia?

Myopia (short-sightedness) is a refraction issue whereby objects in the distance focus in front of the retina and not on it. This makes these objects seem blurred.  It usually happens in infancy and evolve into adulthood.

It happens because the eye is too long and the cornea has more curvature than normal or the crystalline lens is too powerful. 

The WHO predicts that fifty percent of the world population will have myopia by 2050. 

Who is at most risk of having myopia?

There are various factors causing this issue, including: 

  • Genetic reasons
    Myopia is freuqently passed from parents to their children, as it is a dominant gene. 
  • Pathological reasons 
    Some diseases may cause myopia (short-sightedness) either temporarily or permanently. 
  • Environmental reasons
    Some people experience eyesight problems in particular circumstances like where there's low ambiental lighting or in certain professions when working at a short distance from an object, such as what happens when we use a microscope. 

When should I go to the ophthalmologist?

The symptoms of myopia may include headache, tiredness, forcing the eyes to see properly and problems focusing on objects in the distance. 

It begins in childhood and usually progresses into adulthood. 

When it comes to children, we should be aware of certain symptoms as myopia tends to manifest itself during the school years: 

  • Difficulty seeing the board properly 
  • Holding books very close in order to read 
  • Sitting very close to the television 
  • Poor performance at school

Myopia treatment

 Treatment for myopia should be tailored to suit each individual case, and although it cannot be cured, it can be corrected through: 

  • Correction with glasses and/or contact lenses
    This is the simplest way of correcting myopia.
  • Refractive laser surgery
    LASIK, PRK and SMILE, these are the most commonly used techniques in myopia operations due to their proven safety and efficacy. 
  • Intraocular lenses 
    In selected cases there are other surgical techniques like phakic intraocular lens implants (without removing the crystalline lens), or the extraction of the crystalline lens and an intraocular lens implant. 

Laser refractive surgery is the most commonly used technique to correct myopia. 

Professionals who treat this pathology

Frequently asked questions

  • In myopia (short-sightedness), there's an imbalance between the eye's visual system and its length. It can happen either because the cornea or crystalline lens has too much dioptric power or because the eye is excessively long, hence the myopia increases when the eye increases in size with the growth. These changes may be determined by genetic or hereditary factors among others. 

  • We should suspect that a child has myopia when they can't see the board or television propertly, when they move really close to see objects, or when they squint to see far away.

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