Myopia is a very common condition in children, often progressing rapidly and triggering earlier onset of other eye conditions, such as cataracts and detached retina.
Cooper Vision, a company out of Lake Forest, California, just won FDA clearance for the first contact lens that can actually slow down the progression of childhood myopia.
Myopia is a result of the eye growing longer than it should, which causes the image to focus not on the retina, but in front of it. Indicated to be worn by kids between the ages of 8 and 12 years old, the MiSight contacts correct the refractive error just like typical contacts, but they also have additional corrective rings that actually focus light in front of the retina. Although this seems counter-intuitive to improperly focus light, the effect seems to slow down the progression of myopia.
The lenses are expected to be worn during the day and thrown away before going to sleep. They have no beneficial effect if worn while the eyes are not being used.
A study was conducted, involving 135 children, some of whom used the MiSight contacts while others wore conventional soft contact lenses. After three years, the kids that got to use MiSights had an overall less developed myopia. Their eyes were also changing more slowly than those in kids that wore conventional contacts. No unusual side effects were detected in the study.
Cooper Vision will conduct a wider study of the lenses to confirm their effectiveness among a larger group of kids
Product page: MiSight…