Media contact: Jennifer Golden - 07976 439060, jennifer@igolenses.com.

New Treatment Stops Rise of Myopic Eye Damage in UK Asian Family

New Treatment Stops Rise of Myopic Eye Damage in UK Asian Family

 

Although worldwide eye health has improved since the early 1990s[1], myopia, also known as short-sightedness, is growing rapidly. It is estimated that the number of myopes worldwide will grow from the current figure of 1.6 billion to 2.5 billion by 2020[2], half of the world’s population[3] and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) now views myopia as an epidemic.

 

Growth of myopia in Asia is of special concern with as many as 80% of teenagers affected. This problem is also being felt in UK Asian communities, as the Huang family knows only to well. Both parents and all three children have myopia.  However, two years ago they found out about a new treatment called overnight vision correction which could not only correct their eyesight on a day to day basis but which new research4 has shown, can stop myopia from getting worse. At the time Valerie aged 15 had a prescription of -4.00 OD, Antonio 14, was - 6.00 OD and Maxine only 6, was already -1.00.

 

The Huang children began overnight vision correction to control their myopia, which involves wearing custom designed contact lenses while sleeping. Overnight lenses gently reshape the cornea altering the angle at which light enters the eye so that it correctly focuses on the retina. They are worn each night and the lenses help to hold the eyes in the correct shape as a child grows, a little like a dental retainer. At their recent eye test 2 years later the prescriptions of all three children had stabilized. The Huang family was so pleased with the results of the treatment that three cousins who have prescriptions of almost -5.00 OD have also begun the treatment.

 

Myopia usually starts around age six, children below this age universally have good vision, and can progress at 0.5 diopters per annum[4]. The two older Huang children have followed this pattern. However, Valerie is the lucky one because at age six her prescription has been discovered just in time and it is hoped that with the benefit of overnight vision correction treatment she will not go on to develop the high levels of prescription her elder brother, sister, and parents have.

 

Progression of “child onset myopia” continues, albeit at a slower rate, into the early twenties. So both Valerie and Antonio potentially could have ended up with prescriptions of around – 8 to -10 by that time – a doubling of their prescription. But with overnight vision correction this should be kept in check.

 

Professor Helen Swarbrick, UNSW School of Optometry and Vision Sciences, Australia, says "We have just finished a big study in which we have been able to demonstrate a highly significant effect - that is if children wear these lenses and their myopia is progressing, myopia is just stopped in its tracks"

 

"The most important thing for us is to stop our children’s eyesight getting worse and so far this has proved to be the case. They would all need glasses and contact lenses anyway but with overnight vision correction the lenses correct their eyesight as well as stopping it getting worse. We have the evidence of my goddaughter who has worn the lenses for seven years without any prescription increases and after two years our children’s eyesight has not changed either. We are very happy.” says Mrs. Huang

 

"We a starting to see the beginnings of a trend with parents who are concerned about not only their child’s sight now but what it will be in 10 years’ time.” Says Rohin Tuli, the Optician who fitted all six children.

 

-ends-

 

Media Enquiries

 

For further information or to interview the Huang family please contact Jennifer Golden on 07976 439060 or email Jennifer@igolenses.com

 

Notes to Editor

 

Myopia facts

Myopic parents have more myopic children.

 

Youth or juvenile-onset myopia Myopia usually begins in childhood at school age (six years and onwards) and can worsen until the early adult years. Adult-onset myopia occurs in adults (ages 20 to 40) with no prior history of problems in childhood. One can also be born with high levels of myopia (congenital myopia).

 

About iGO Overnight Vision Correction

 

·      The SMART Study uses i-GO OVC contact lenses the trademark for a US patented contact lens made by Euclid Systems Corp and has been approved by the Food and Drugs Administration

·      Suitable for all ages, around 75% of all short-sighted people are suitable prescriptions up to -5.00D with astigmatism less than 1.50D.

·      Initial design and fitting is from £200 plus £45 per month.

·      A European CE marked medical device available in prescription through accredited opticians.

·      Children can claim a NHS allowance against the treatment.

·      Interested consumers can visit www.igolenses.co.uk or contact 0844 736257



[1] World Health Organisation (WHO)

[2] ICEE data 2002

[3] World Health Organisation (WHO)

[4] SMART Study - The Stabilisation of Myopia through Accelerated Reshaping Technique – 5 year longitudinal study. Conclusions to be presented at British Contact Lens Association Conference May 2012

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