Fighting Back Against Myopia: The Right Tools Make All the Difference in the Thick of the Myopia Epidemic in the Asia-Pacific Region

Proper and timely diagnosis of myopia is becoming more important by the day as the disease continues to rage around the world. At an APAO 2023 symposium, leading experts Dr. Foo Li Lian and Dr. Kyoko Ohno-Matsui highlighted what makes the OCULUS Myopia Master® the perfect wingman in the myopia dogfight.

Myopia and its emergence around the world need no introduction to doctors in the Asia-Pacific region. As the world licks its wounds from the COVID-19 pandemic, myopia has quickly and quietly become endemic across the globe.

New tools on the market have risen to meet the challenges brought on by the resultant bewildering variety of options now available for myopia treatment. And in an OCULUS-sponsored lunch symposium at the 38th Asia-Pacific Academy of Ophthalmology Congress (APAO 2023) in Kuala Lumpur, one of the gold standards in myopia — the Myopia Master® (OCULUS Optikgeräte GmbH, Wetzlar, Germany) — took center stage.

In a session moderated by Dr. Huy Tran, internationally-renowned myopia maestros Dr. Kyoko Ohno-Matsui (Japan) and Dr. Li Lian Foo (Singapore) took a look at the Myopia Master® and how it fits into the modern myopia management and control landscape.

The master at work

Dr. Ohno-Matsui of Tokyo Medical and Dental University kicked things off with her presentation, entitled OCULUS Myopia Master® for Myopia Management. Her presentation featured golden nuggets about the Myopia Master that position it as the ideal companion in the era of endemic myopia.

She began by asking one of the most important questions in myopia care — what parameters are critical for myopia management and control in children? She then stressed the primacy of cycloplegic refraction for diagnosis and axial length measurement for monitoring progression. No matter what the clinicians need to tackle myopia in all of its stages, Dr. Ohno-Matsui showed how the Myopia Master was up to the task. It all starts with prevention. “Children at risk can be identified even before myopia develops,” she explained.

The trouble is that this identification process is complex given how different eyes are from around the world. She compared Caucasian children with Chinese children, who have longer axial lengths and faster axial elongation to illustrate her point.

But the Myopia Master is on it. “One of the outstanding features of the OCULUS Myopia Master® is the availability of these percentile curves, which is essential for myopia management based on axial length,” she stated. Not only does the device allow clinicians to compare patient data with the relevant normative BHVI database, but it also allows for prognostic estimates of the projected degree of future myopia if treatment is discontinued with a 95% confidence interval of +/- 1.85D.

This ability to predict myopia progression is a critical component in another one of the massive hurdles in myopia management and control — educating the parent. Selling a parent on pricey and time-consuming myopia treatment options can be tough, especially if the disease has not yet begun to progress in terms of refractive error. The Myopia Master, however, puts a suite of educational tools at the clinician’s disposal to combat this.

“The Myopia Master® also makes it easy for patients and their parents to understand the mechanisms of myopia,” Dr. Ohno-Matsui explained. One particularly useful tool for Dr. Ohno-Matsui is the reports generated by the device. “The results are displayed in an easy-to-understand manner showing the degree to which environmental factors involved in myopia worsen with age due to events such as studying for entrance exams,” she began.

The Myopia Master® is also primed for what’s coming down the road. “Furthermore, as scientific evidence accumulates, risk factors can be customized and added in the future,” she continued. “This allows for precise guidance regarding treatment choices and lifestyle modifications. This device is sure to be a very valuable tool for myopia management,” Dr. Ohno-Matsui concluded.

Taking the plunge with the Myopia Master®

There’s never been a better time for plugging myopia management into your practice, and celebrated expert Dr. Foo Li Lian of Singapore National Eye Center explained how the Myopia Master® plays a critical role in the integration process.

Dr. Foo began with some sobering statistics about the myopia onslaught: 50% of the world’s population will be myopic by 2050. In Singapore, 80% of the 18-year-old population is currently myopic; and by 2030, 80% of all Singaporeans will have the disease. All of this adds up to a significant burden on public healthcare and a disastrous drop in quality of life and productivity.

After a review of currently available treatment options and a stern warning against non-evidence-based treatment options, Dr. Foo moved to monitoring myopia progression using cycloplegic refraction and manifest fogging techniques. In the past, it was incumbent upon the clinician to chart all of these data by hand. But with the Myopia Master®, Dr. Foo explained, all of this is made a snap by digitalizing it all in the device.

Intervention is also a key area that the Myopia Master® simplifies in Dr. Foo’s practice. “We always have this dilemma in the clinic — we want to know who the patient we are treating is, when and for what duration to treat them, and what myopia control treatment to use. We need to balance the potential risks and side effects.”

This is all streamlined by the Myopia Master®. “[With the Myopia Master®], you can input the risk factors for progression like parental myopia, near-work, and outdoor time together with the clinical data, and they will derive a profile for you that will indicate the risk of myopia progression,” Dr. Foo stated.

Like Dr. Ohno-Matsui, Dr. Foo also stressed the importance of parent education. Parents can have difficulty understanding the ins and outs of axial length, and Dr. Foo praised one particular feature of the Myopia Master that makes this a breeze: “The Gullstrand Refractive Analysis System is very useful for parent understanding of myopia progression,” she explained.

In the end, though myopia is here to stay, we are well-equipped to deal with it. “There is a need for action — even early myopia can benefit from early intervention and early myopia control treatment,” Dr. Foo opined. And with the Myopia Master®, taking action to preserve sight has never been easier.

Editor’s Note: The 38th Asia-Pacific Academy of Ophthalmology Congress (APAO 2023) was held on February 23 to 26 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Reporting for this story took place during the event. This article was first published in COOKIE magazine Issue 11.

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments