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Myopic Epidemic: Retinal Implications and Treatment Options

New technologies for diagnosing and monitoring myopia, retinal implications and treatment options, are to be explored at an Optometrist Masterclass lecture in late October, delivered by Associate Professor Lawrence Lee.

Myopia, a significant public health issue recognised by the World Health Organization due to its increasing global prevalence and sight-threatening sequalae, has garnered a collaborative effort across all eye care professionals and researchers. A special 2019 Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science journal edition has been dedicated to showcase a series of papers addressing current standards on the definition and classification of myopia, myopia genetics and experimental models of myopia, myopia control and interventions, and clinical management guidelines. The edition provides a platform for further research and collaboration to address the myopia epidemic.

The edition provides a platform for further research and collaboration

With a world-wide prevalence projected to be 50% of the population by year 2050,1 such collaborative work is crucial to further advance the understanding of the aetiology of myopia development and validate the current clinical management guidelines of myopia to reduce the progression, particularly in the young generations.

Optometrists in their primary eye care role manage myopia on a daily basis, in terms of correcting myopia and prescribing management options to reduce myopia progression. Optometrists are also involved in educating their myopic patients as well as diagnosing the myriad of complications that can be associated with myopia. The common retinal complications include retinal detachment, peripheral retinal tears, myopic foveoschisis, myopic macular degeneration, myopic choroidal neovascularisation, and dome-shaped macula.2,3,4 Other conditions associated with myopia include punctate inner choroidopathy and myopic macular hole. The risks of developing glaucoma and cataract formation are also higher in individuals with myopia.

At the forthcoming 2019 Optometrist Masterclass, A/Prof Lee, a vitreoretinal surgeon from City Eye Centre, Brisbane, will deliver a lecture Myopic Epidemic: Retinal Implications and Treatment Options. A/Prof. Lee will present clinical cases of retinal complications associated with myopia and explore medical and surgical treatment options for each case. With the recent advances in ocular imaging modalities, A/Prof Lee will also present how ultrawidefield imaging and OCT-angiography can provide unprecedented information into these retinal complications of myopia. Optometrists will walk away from this Masterclass with useful clinical pearls that can be used to educate their myopic patients and diagnose potential sight-threatening complications of myopia.

The 2019 Optometrist Masterclass, on Sunday, 27 October, is approved for 24/24T Optometry Australia CPD Points. Early bird conference tickets are available until 31 July. For details, visit www.2019masterclass.com.


  1. Holden BA, Fricke TR, Wilson DA, et al. Global Prevalence of Myopia and High Myopia and Temporal Trends from 2000 through 2050. Ophthalmology 2016: 123:1036-1042. 
  2. Ikuno Y. Overview of the complications of high myopia. Retina. 2017 Dec;37(12):2347-235. 
  3. Lorenzo D et al. Dome-shaped macular in myopic eyes: Twelve-month follow-up. Retina 2017:37(4):680-686. 
  4. Gohil R et al. Myopic foveoschisis: a clinical review. Eye 2015: 9(5):593-60.