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Hard Contact Lens May Slow Kids' Myopia

Progression of nearsightedness was less severe than with soft lenses

TUESDAY, Dec. 14, 2004 (HealthDayNews) -- Nearsightedness progresses more slowly in children who wear hard contact lenses than in those who were soft contact lenses, says an Ohio State University study in the December issue of the Archives of Ophthalmology.

The study included 116 children, aged 8 to 11, who were randomly assigned to wear either hard or soft lenses. The children were given vision tests at the start of the study and again three years later. All the children had low to moderate myopia at the start of the study.

When they were checked three years later, the children who wore hard lenses had a slower progression of myopia. However, "the slowed change in refractive error may not be overwhelming from the clinical perspective," the study authors wrote.

"The results of the study provide information for eye care practitioners to share with the patients, but they do not indicate the [hard lenses] should be prescribed primarily for myopia control," the authors concluded.

Some previous studies found that rigid contact lenses may slow myopia progression in children, while others have found no effect.

More information

The American Optometric Association has more about myopia.

SOURCE: JAMA/Archives journals, news release, Dec. 13, 2004
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