Short Interruptions of Imposed Hyperopic Defocus Earlier in Treatment are More Effective at Preventing Myopia Development

Sci Rep. 2019 Aug 7;9(1):11459. doi: 10.1038/s41598-019-48009-3.


The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of interrupting negative lens wear for short periods early or late during the development of lens-induced myopia in marmosets. Sixteen marmosets were reared with a -5D contact lens on their right eye (plano on contralateral eye) for 8 weeks. Eight marmosets had lenses removed for 30 mins twice/day during the first four weeks (early interruption) and eight during the last four weeks (late interruption). Data were compared to treated controls that wore lenses continuously (N = 12) and untreated controls (N = 10). Interocular differences (IOD) in vitreous chamber (VC) depth and central and peripheral mean spherical refractive error (MSE) were measured at baseline and after four (T4) and eight (T8) weeks of treatment. Visual experience during the interruptions was monitored by measuring refraction while marmosets were seated at the center of a 1 m radius viewing cylinder. At T4 the eyes that were interrupted early were not different from untreated controls (p = 0.10) and at T8 had grown less and were less myopic than those interrupted later (IOD change from baseline, VC: +0.07 ± 0.04 mm vs +0.20 ± 0.03 mm, p < 0.05; MSE: -1.59 ± 0.26D vs -2.63 ± 0.60D, p = 0.13). Eyes interrupted later were not different from treated controls (MSE, p = 0.99; VC, p = 0.60) and grew at the same rate as during the first four weeks of uninterrupted lens wear (T4 - T0: 3.67 ± 1.1 µm/day, T8 - T4: 3.56 ± 1.3 µm/day p = 0.96). Peripheral refraction was a predictive factor for the amount of myopia developed only when the interruption was not effective. In summary, interrupting hyperopic defocus with short periods of myopic defocus before compensation occurs prevents axial myopia from developing. After myopia develops, interruption is less effective.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Callithrix
  • Contact Lenses / adverse effects*
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Eye / growth & development*
  • Fixation, Ocular / physiology
  • Humans
  • Hyperopia / physiopathology
  • Hyperopia / therapy*
  • Myopia / diagnosis
  • Myopia / physiopathology
  • Myopia / prevention & control*
  • Refraction, Ocular / physiology
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Visual Fields / physiology