Tuesday, January 10, 2012

New study supports orthokeratology for myopia control and for astigmatism correction

The Faculty of Health and Social Sciences at Hong Kong's Polytechnic University issued a press release today on the results from two studies on orthokeratology.  One, called the "ROMIO" study, was a single blind, randomized, controlled clinical trial on the effectiveness of orthokeratology for myopia control.  The other, called the "TO SEE" study, looked at the effectiveness of orthokeratology for astigmatism correction.

Brief description of orthokeratology

Patients who wish to receive orthokeratology must have a thorough eye examination to see if they are suitable for the treatment. The optometrist will specially designed and dispense a pair of rigid retainer contact lenses made from high oxygen permeable material to be worn during sleep. The lens will reshape the cornea resulting in perfect vision the next day without the need to wear glasses or contact lenses.

Orthokeratology is the only non-surgical treatment that allows you to be free of corrective lenses like eye-glasses and contact lenses.


Myopia and its progression is a serious problem.  Not only does it cause progressively worsening eyesight, requiring thicker and more expensive lenses, it increases the risk of serious eye diseases such as glaucoma and retinal detachment which can cause permanent vision loss.

After 24 months of research, the ROMIO study found that the increase in eyeball length (also called "axial length" -the progression of myopia is measured by observing the elongation of the eyeball)  in a group of subjects that were treated with orthokeratology was 0.36mm.  In the group that was not treated with orthokeratology and only wore spectacles, the eyeball length was 0.63mm. The results indicate that orthokeratology slowed down the progression of myopia by 43%.


Researchers at the same university also concluded the "TO-SEE" study which looked at 37 children aged 6 to 12 years to study the potential of orthokeratology for the reduction of astigmatism. The team found that toric design orthokeratology lens retainers effectively reduced astigmatism by 79% after one month of wear. At the end of 24 months, the eyeball length of the participants was 0.31mm which indicated that myopia was also being controlled.

Orthokeratology is a reversible treatment and can be stopped anytime. The results of these two studies show that orthokeratology is a safe and effective solution for refractive error correction, myopic control and astigmatism reduction.

I posted about the dangers of the myopia epidemic here.