9 April 2020
Myopia is a refractive error in which distance vision is blurry and near vision is good.
What are refractive errors?
Light rays undergo a refraction process when passing through the transparent media represented by the cornea, aqueous humor, lens and vitreous body. These light rays change their direction, so that the projection of the things we look at is placed on the retina (visual receptor). This is the normal case, of an emmetropic eye (without diopters), which sees clearly at all distances.
When the projection of the images is not placed appropriately on the retina surface, the vision is blurry.
Blurry vision can be caused by myopia (light rays focus in front of the retina), by hyperopia (light focus is behind the retina) or by astigmatism (the image is formed in several places). All these cases are refractive errors, accompanied by visual disturbances.
What is and how does myopia occur?
Myopia is part of the ocular abnormalities described as refractive errors. In case of myopia the distance vision is blurry and the near vision is good.
Myopia manifests itself by blurry distance vision and good near vision. Myopia can exist at birth, can emerge during time, as the child grows, most of the time during puberty or later. Myopia increases with age.
If one or both parents have myopia, there is the risk that the child suffers from the same ophthalmologic condition.
Myopic patients have good near vision, they are deemed to be studious persons as they do not make effort when they carry out activities which require good near vision.
How does it manifest itself?
In the attempt to see better, the eye accommodation effort is permanent. Therefore, eye pain, headache and visual fatigue may occur. Myopic patients have a difficult distance vision, but a good near vision.
Can complications occur due to myopia?
It is recommended that myopic patients avoid great physical efforts and head trauma due to the risk of retinal detachment. The higher the diopters the higher the risk. In rare cases this condition can occur spontaneously.
How can myopia be treated?
Myopia increases with the age. Wearing glasses does not stop diopter increase, but provides a better vision.
After a certain age, when the physician and the parents deem appropriately, contact lenses can be worn.
What you must understand is that glasses or contact lenses do not heal myopia!
Myopia can be healed
For those who are tired of being myopic, dependent on glasses and want to do sport, to ride the motorbike without being disturbed by glasses, „myopia can be healed”. By means of a diopters reduction surgery the cornea is reshaped thus its curvature radius is modified. Therefore myopic patients no longer need glasses or contact lenses.
Glasses and contact lenses provide a temporary correction of the vision, while diopter reduction surgery permanently corrects this vision defects.
Myopia and natural childbirth
Women who suffer from myopia and have over -3 diopters are not allowed to give birth naturally, because there is a risk of retinal detachment. Myopic eyes are more elongated and have a thinner and more sensitive retina. The risk of retinal detachment occurs in cases of great physical effort, this is why the ophthalmologist recommends cesarean section. Generally, highly myopic patients should avoid great physical efforts in general, not only during pregnancy.
Even if a diopter reduction surgery was performed before pregnancy, cesarean recommendation shall remain valid, because the shape of the eye remained the same, during the surgery the intervention was performed only on the cornea.
In rare cases of women with myopia, during pregnancy, a slight increase of diopters may happen due to changes inside the body. This is normal, women do not need to panic or to change glasses. An ophthalmologic investigation is recommended after 6 months of pregnancy.
Generally, regardless of whether there are vision issues, an ophthalmologic consult is recommended during pregnancy, where an examination of the retina shall be performed. This recommendation is often given by the obstetrician, due to the risk of high blood pressure.
Find more details here.
Which are the methods for myopia correction?
Myopia can be decreased by:
PRK / LASEK are two similar methods of diopter correction by means of excimer laser. The technique is based on the property of the corneal epithelium (the first layer of the cornea) to regenerate naturally and consists in the partial removal of this layer. Subsequently, the cornea is reshaped by means of the laser, thus obtaining the correction of the diopters. The difference between these techniques consists of the fact that in case of LASEK, the removed epithelium is repositioned after the laser treatment, being gradually replaced by a new epithelium.
FemtoLASIK is a modern diopter correction method which requires the use of two types of laser: FemtoSecond and Excimer. The diopter reduction surgeries are performed by means of a quick treatment, customized treatment, with no sound, no odor, independent of the environment, with an accuracy of less than one micron, following the corneal curvature.
ReLEx SMILE technique
A new minimally invasive refractive procedure, which represents the third generation of laser refractive surgery. The great innovation is that the technique is performed without flap (as in case of all LASIK techniques) and without the removal of the corneal epithelium (as in case of PRK and LASEK). In a single step, the femtosecond laser creates a refractive lenticule and the tunnel through which the lens is extracted, without ablation and flap.
Refractive lens exchange
It is a surgical technique similar to cataract surgery in which the lens inside the eye is replaced by a multifocal artiﬁcial lens with diopter value adjusted to the needs of the respective eye. Therefore, after the surgery, the patient no longer needs glasses. After implantation, the artiﬁcial lens remains functional for the rest of the patient’s life.