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Research Update

Welcome to our monthly Research Update, available exclusively to IACLE and BCLA members to support your teaching and practice.


The quest to understand myopia and its control continues in this issue as it begins with a report on the potential additive effect of two treatment options: atropine and orthokeratology. Another study reviews the proportion of spectacle prescriptions for myopia and progression rates among children attending a secondary and tertiary eye care facility in London over 10 years.

A Turkish team studies meibomian gland dysfunction and the association with ocular discomfort in patients with ocular prosthesis. Researchers in Australia look at temporal considerations in contact lens discomfort.

As the COVID-19 pandemic still continues to affect lives and lifestyles across the globe, a UK group explores contact lens wearers’ compliance behaviours, attitudes and concerns during the pandemic. Finally, we include a paper that reports a newly identified clinical condition: face mask-associated ocular irritation and dryness.

Happy reading!!

The IACLE Education Team


Journals reviewed in this issue:

Ophthalmic & Physiological Optics  40:5 
Journal of Optometry  13:3
Eye & Contact Lens  46:5  
Contact Lens & Anterior Eye  In press
Ophthalmology & Therapy  9:3


Combining 0.01% atropine with orthokeratology 

Tan et al report one-year results of the single-masked, two-arm, randomised controlled Atropine with Orthokeratology (AOK) study to investigate whether there is an additive effect when 0.01% atropine instillation is combined with ortho-k for myopia control. Myopic Chinese children were randomly assigned either to an AOK group (29 subjects) or ortho-k only group (30 subjects). Subjects in the AOK group instilled one drop of 0.01% atropine, 10 min before nightly wear of ortho-k lenses. The combined treatment slowed axial elongation by 0.09mm over ortho-k alone in one year, suggesting there is an additive effect. 

Ophthalmic Physiol Opt 2020;40:5 557-566. Read the abstract

Myopic trends in children in the UK

To determine whether there has been an increase in the proportion of children requiring spectacles for myopia, and to evaluate the proportion of children in whom myopia progresses, including the rate of progression, Wong & Dahlmann-Noor collated data of children under the age of 17 years seen at Moorfields Eye Hospital in London, UK from 2008-2017 (63,854 datasets from 23,593 children). The proportion of myopic prescriptions increased from 24% to 32%. The proportion of spectacle prescriptions for myopia and the rate of progression were higher than previously reported for European countries.

J Optom 2020;13:3 146-154. Read the full text


MGD and discomfort with ocular prosthesis

To investigate the effects of ocular prosthesis on meibomian glands and identify the role of meibomian gland dysfunction (MGD) on ocular discomfort in prosthetic eyes, Altin Ekin et al included 55 patients wearing unilateral ocular prosthesis over 1 year in this prospective study. A 15-item questionnaire on MGD-related ocular symptoms was administered and relevant clinical investigations performed. Results showed that meibomian gland function was significantly impaired in prosthetic eye wearers. Ocular discomfort symptoms significantly correlated with MGD-related dry eye.

Eye & Contact Lens 2020;46:5 285-290. Read the abstract


Contact time vs time of the day in CL discomfort

To determine the relative contributions to perceived discomfort of contact time with the lens and time of day at which wear begins, Papas et al conducted this cross-over study among 23 subjects. Ocular discomfort was reported during one day without CLs and on three other days while wearing soft CLs for 12 hours. Lens wear began at a different time on each day: before 8am, between 8am-10am and between 10am-12 pm. In conclusion, discomfort during CL wear is associated with the length of time lenses are on-eye but not with the time of day when lenses are placed on-eye.

Cont Lens Anterior Eye Aug 29 2020. DOI: 10.1016/j.clae.2020.08.007. Read the full text


Soft CL wearer compliance in COVID-19 pandemic

Vianya-Estopa et al administered this online survey to explore contact lens wearers’ compliance behaviours, attitudes and concerns during the pandemic. The survey captured: a) demographic information; b) type of lenses worn and compliance with lens wear and care procedures; c) adherence to recommendations; and d) concerns associated with CL wear during the pandemic, from 247 responders. Soft lens wearers showed good compliance with handwashing during the pandemic but lens wear and care was significantly worse for reusable lens wearers than daily disposable lens wearers. 

Cont Lens Anterior Eye Aug 14 2020. DOI: 10.1016/j.clae.2020.08.003. Read the full text

Face mask-associated ocular symptoms

Based on previous studies and clinical observations, Moshirfar et al report an increase in ocular irritation and dryness among regular face mask users, a finding not previously described in the literature. Eye dryness, irritation and keratopathy from mask wear may become a widespread problem, the authors say, raising concerns about eye health and increased risk of disease transmission in prolonged mask users. Practitioners are urged to take note of this possibility and educate patients on proactive eye care and protection.

Ophthalmol Ther 2020;9:397-400. DOI: 10.1007/s40123-020-00282-6. Read the full text


© International Association of Contact Lens Educators 2020

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