Myopia and associated pathological complications

Ophthalmic Physiol Opt. 2005 Sep;25(5):381-91. doi: 10.1111/j.1475-1313.2005.00298.x.


Besides the direct economic and social burden of myopia, associated ocular complications may lead to substantial visual loss. In several population and clinic-based cohorts, case-control and cross-sectional studies, higher risks of posterior subcapsular cataract, cortical and nuclear cataract in myopic patients were reported. Patients with high myopia (spherical equivalent at least -6.0 D) are more susceptible to ocular abnormalities. The prevalent risks of glaucoma were higher in myopic adults, and risks of chorioretinal abnormalities such as retinal detachment, chorioretinal atrophy and lacquer cracks increased with severity of myopia and greater axial length. Myopic adults were more likely to have tilted, rotated, and larger discs as well as other optic disc abnormalities. Often, these studies support possible associations between myopia and specific ocular complications, but we cannot infer causality because of limitations in study methodology. The detection and treatment of possible pathological ocular complications is essential in the management of high myopia. The ocular risks associated with myopia should not be underestimated and there is a public health need to prevent the onset or progression of myopia.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Cataract / etiology
  • Child
  • Choroid Diseases / etiology
  • Glaucoma / etiology
  • Humans
  • Macular Degeneration / etiology
  • Middle Aged
  • Myopia / complications*
  • Myopia, Degenerative / complications
  • Optic Disk / abnormalities
  • Retinal Diseases / etiology