Shortsightedness (Myopia)

Myopia (shortsightedness)

Shortsightedness is a common eye condition in which you can see nearby objects clearly but due to the improper focusing mechanism of the eye and due to the large structure of the eye, the light rays coming from the faraway object cannot form an image on the retina. Due to which the patient complaints of problem with far vision.

With the advancement in medical science, procedures are there to cure and reduce the progression of myopia. Most, parents should be keen about the eyesight of their child and should seek early help from the doctor. Patients presenting at late age develop complications related to myopia, that are difficult to treat.

What is Myopia? How to define myopia?

For the normal process of vision, the image from a distant target must fall on the retina to be normally perceived by the brain.Myopia(Nearsightedness) is a condition that arises when light from a distant target is brought to focus in front of the retina.

Is myopia the same as Shortsightedness

Yes, myopia is shortsightedness. In myopia, the patient is able to perceive near objects clearly while distant targets appear blurry.

Is Myopia Genetic

Yes, myopia can be genetically inherited. It can be caused in many developmental and genetical conditions.

What are the symptoms of myopia?

The distant object appears blurred. You may develop headache or discomfort while looking at a far object.

What are the causes of myopia?

The causes of myopia can be divided into index myopia and axial myopia.

Index myopia:

In this condition the refractive power of the cornea is increased, playing its role to refract the rays more intensely and bring the image to be formed in front of the retina.

Axial myopia:

In this condition the anteroposterior diameter of the eye is increased so the normal cornea brings the image on the supposed area of the retina, due to the placement of the retina a bit far than its normal position, the image can’t be formed on the retina.

How myopia is classified?

It can be classified into physiological myopia and pathological myopia.

Physiological myopia:

Physiological myopia is < 5D and is caused by increased time spent doing near work or reading through teenage/adulthood.

Pathological myopia:

Pathological myopia is> 6D and is caused due to enlargement of the eyeball with lengthening of the posterior segment.

What is high myopia

Myopia with the correcting lens of power -6DS or more is labeled as high myopia as explained by American Optometrist Association (AOA). Patients with high myopia are more prone to complications as discussed above. 

What are the complications of myopia?

Common pathological complications include

Retinal detachment

Choroidal and retinal degeneration

Open-angle glaucoma

Lens dislocation


Macular hole


choroidal neovasculization


Can Myopia be Cured

Yes, Correction of myopia can be made with corrective concave lenses either as spectacles or contact lenses. The refractive power of the eye can be made with refractive surgeries for example LASIK, LASEK, or PRK.


a. Prescriptive lenses:

The refractive error in myopes is caused due to uneven or steep cornea. The refractive power for the same is measured and a prescription for the refractive error is generated. The ophthalmologist will advise concave lenses in glasses or contact lenses.


In this procedure, the surgeon will raise a thin flap of your cornea, attached to one side. Laser is applied to the stroma of the cornea and the steepness is reduced. The flap is again placed in its place. The recovery from LASIK is quick and it is relatively a pain-free procedure.


In this procedure, a thin flap of corneal epithelium is raised and laser applied to the stroma. The epithelium is again placed on the surface of the cornea.

d. PRK:

In PRK, the epithelium is completely removed and laser is applied to the stroma for reshaping. Epithelium is not replaced, instead, it is allowed to regrow.

e. Orthokeratology:

In this procedure, devices similar to rigid contact lenses are put on the corneal surface for a certain period of time. This result in “moulding” or reshaping of the corneal surface. After some time, the frequency of wearing the device is reduced. The effects are dramatic and free people from contact lenses or glasses.

What is myopia control ?

The myopia control or progression of myopia can be slowed with orthokeratology and multifocal lens designs.

Can Myopia Lead to Blindness ?

Myopia can be corrected with glasses, contact lenses, LASIK, LASEK, and PRK however high grades of myopia beyond the correcting average of Lasik can render you legally blind, defined as a vision of less than 3/60 in the better eye. The early patient presents to the ophthalmologist, the more easily myopia and its complications can be controlled. Those presenting with the complications are difficult to treat and manage.

Which lens is used for correction of myopia ?

A concave lens is used for myopes. It is a minus concave lens, used to bring the image, from in front of the retina to, on the retina.

What is hyperopia ?

Hyperopia is the opposite of myopia. In this condition, the patient is far-sighted and is able to perceive objects in the far distance while unable to see objects at a near distance.

In hyperopia or hypermetropia, the image is formed back to the retina. Plus lenses or convex lenses are used to bring the image back on the retina.

How to reduce myopia in teenage ?

To reduce myopia in teenage, the above-mentioned methods should be followed
a. Glasses:
b. Contact lenses
c. Orthokeratology
d. More time should be spent outside.

How to fix shortsightedness naturally?

There are no specific natural methods to fix myopia, however, some steps can be followed
a. Spending more time outside
b. Eating healthy fruits.
c. Avoid smoking.
d. Reduce eyestrain.
e. Keep your eyes protected from sunlight

Dr Sadia Ayaz
Dr Sadia Ayaz

I am an ophthalmologist and eye surgeon

Articles: 47

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