Bifocals & Myopia Progression

as you may know from reading my blog, i'm a big fan of ortho-k & myopia control. there is new data, however that says that PRISMATIC BIFOCAL GLASSES may also help.

Link to LA Times story

I am just reporting the news. However...the last big study I remember from China about myopia control said (falsely) that ortho-k lenses cause acanthamoeba infection (they do was repeatedly debunked by multiple subsequent studies in the U.S., U.K. & Australia). The culprit in that study was thought to be untreated Chinese tap water.

Furthermore MANY American O.D.'s have Rx'd bifocals for children in the last 60 years in an attempt to slow myopia progression, and in my opinion its never worked. In theory adding prism is a little different, b/c there's not such a disconnect between accommodative (focusing) stimulus & stimulus to convergence ("crossing" your eyes to read)...but is it really all that different than traditional bifocals? In bifocal glasses you still have the problem of PERIPHERAL ASPHERIC BLUR, which is thought to be a major contributor in myopia progression. Plus good luck getting the average kid to wear "bifocals". Boy you think we have enough problems with compliance with glasses...just add in bifocals to that equation.

The good news, I guess, is that Medicaid & some insurance providers will probably pay for a child to have bifocals if Rx'd, whereas ortho-k is still totally un-insured. So now parents may have a myopia control option that they could afford on their plan.

I doubt I'll be Rx-ing many pediatric bifocals for myopia control, especially until/unless I read some non-Chinese study confirming the results. Who knows, tho?


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