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Myopia Management

What is Myopia?

Myopia, also known as nearsightedness, is one of three types of refractive errors typically corrected with glasses or contact lenses. It occurs when the shape of your eye causes light rays to refract (or bend) incorrectly, focusing images in front of your retina instead of on your retina.

Find out if your child is a candidate for Myopia Treatment

What is Progressive Myopia?

Myopia causes difficulty with distance vision and in most cases, simply treating with glasses or contact lenses improves distance vision. If myopia exceeds -6.00 diopters, there is an increased risk of developing degenerative myopia, which may involve vision threatening complications:

  • Retinal detachment
  • Choroidal neovascular membrane
  • Glaucoma
  • Pre-mature cataracts
  • Lacquer Cracks

Myopia Management

Myopia Management aims to limit the progression of nearsightedness to reduce the risk of further ophthalmic disease. Three main treatment methods have been effective in slowing the progression of myopia. These treatment options cannot reverse myopia that is already present, but it is possible to significantly slow further myopic progression. The goal of treatment is milder glasses prescriptions by adulthood and reduced risk for sight-threatening conditions caused by degenerative myopia.

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What Causes Myopia?

Myopia is on the rise – in its frequency and its severity. This can be linked to two factors; genetics and lifestyle. Children with one or two myopic parents may be more at risk to develop myopia themselves. In addition, lifestyle plays a factor as kids are spending more time using handheld devices instead of spending time outdoors.

Below are the three treatment options available.

Atropine Drops

The use of Atropine drops is the simplest treatment method.

  • The drops are instilled into each eye, once per day, every day at a time of your choosing.
  • Patients report minimal to no side effects due to a very low dose.

Multifocal Soft Contact Lenses

This moderately involved treatment method entails a contact lens fitting.

  • The lenses must be worn most waking hours, at least 6 days a week.
  • Patients may choose daily disposable or monthly lenses.
  • Patients do not have to wear glasses during the day.

Orthokeratology

The third treatment modality shown to reduce myopic progression is not offered at Northwest Eye. It is the most involved method which requires a more in depth contact lens fitting as compared to the soft multifocal contact lens options.

This method reduces myopic progression via a hard lens worn at night and molds the surface of the eye.

Myopia FAQs

Yes and no. There is a greater likelihood of a child developing myopia with one or more parents who are myopic but it is also possible to be myopic without family history of myopia. Myopia is influenced both by genetics and environmental factors.

The length of treatment is highly dependent on the age a child begins having myopia. The younger the age the more likely treatment is to continue over the course of several years. Dr. Sheffer will continue treatment based on the child’s success in myopia management and discussing the process with the child’s family.

If treatment is discontinued, myopia may progress further. If there is a recurrence of progression, treatment may be recommended again until the eyes are stable.

As of now, all three of the myopia management treatment methods have similar outcomes in multiple studies. Dr. Sheffer will help determine which one is best to start with. Depending on the option you select, there are different follow-up intervals. If one treatment is not effective or not tolerated well, then another treatment may be chosen.

Myopia progression is measured by the rate of myopia progressing over time. The goal is to reduce the rate of progression in treatment. Depending on the type of myopia management used, Dr. Sheffer will monitor myopia progression to ensure effectiveness and make changes as needed. Reducing the rate of myopia progression will reduce the risks of ocular health complications later in life.

Myopia Doctors

Dr. Nicole Sheffer is one of the few Myopia Management specialists in the state. To determine candidacy for the Myopia Treatment program, please call us to schedule an evaluation. (763) 416-7600

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Serving Our Community

With six locations throughout the Twin Cities metro area, Northwest Eye is among the largest eye care providers in the Midwest. Be Eye Wise and schedule a general eye exam or a specific service consultation today. We have optical  at the following offices:  Golden Valley, Minnetonka, Maple Grove, St. Anthony, and Wayzata, MN.

8501 Golden Valley Rd., Suite 100
Golden Valley, MN 55427
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12000 Elm Creek Blvd N., Suite 100
Maple Grove, MN 55369
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6060 Clearwater Dr., Suite 150
Minnetonka, MN 55343
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2601 39th Ave NE., Suite 1
St. Anthony, MN 55421
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250 Central Ave N., Suites 105 & 107, Optical Suite 106
Wayzata, MN 55391
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7125 Tamarack Rd, Suite 150,
Woodbury, MN 55125
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11091 Ulysses St NE., Suite 400
Blaine, MN 55434
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9801 Dupont Ave S., Suite 100
Bloomington, MN 55431
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10709 Wayzata Blvd., Suites 100 & 120
Minnetonka, MN 55305
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