Hi, it’s Dr Rajesh Khanna, and if you were born before 1965, you should not miss this episode, because now we’re going to discuss about presbyopia with a flurry of questions. Oh my God, I didn’t even realize that a lot of people would be interested. But the number of questions are even more than what came for lasik. We’ll start with the first question and it is actually related to the same word “start”.
“When does presbyopia start, or when does presbyopia occur?” So presbyopia means ageing eyes in simple terms. Around 40 to 50, between that age group, our lens has hardened, the muscles… they’re called ‘Zonules’ , they’re very thin fibrous but they act like muscles that pull against the shape of the lens, they begin to weaken. So in that age group, it’s almost mathematical how the weakness occurs. Usually at age 40, you need zero diopters of reading add, but by the time you hit sixty, you need plus three reading add. In between for every four – five years, it increases by half a diopter. “When does presbyopia stabilize?” So it begins to stabilize towards the end of 50’s and early 60’s, because the maximum limit is reached, which is 3 diopters.
“Who gets presbyopia?” Everybody gets presbyopia. Whether you are a man, woman, whichever ethnicity, but not 100%, so you know that everything that is a bell-shaped curve, some people will get it in their 30’s, and some people will not get it until 70’s, but the rule of thumb, everybody gets presbyopia around 45 years of age, which affects the near end reading activities.
“Who discovered presbyopia?” I think even as early as Benjamin Franklin, or even if you go back to the 13th century, there are pictures where people have invented some sort of glasses to be able to read. So I think presbyopia had been there for a long time with us. And it might have started when men and women started living longer. Because as you know, people who follow the Paleolithic diet etc, in those times, human age was around 30-32 years, so people did not live long to experience presbyopia. But I think that around the time of our millennia, about 2000 years ago, when human life began to increase, we experienced presbyopia.
“What does it mean presbyopia?” Presbyopia means ageing eyes. “What age does presbyopia start?” We again discussed that, around 40 to 45. “What to do when you get presbyopia?” There are a couple of things you can do. You can push your hands a bit further and try to read. You can get glasses, or you can put a contact lens in one eye and not the other and make it for reading, or there are surgical procedures which we will discuss in following questions and answer.
“What is presbyopia contact lens?” So I was just hinting at that. So if you wear contact lens in one eye, that will help you read with one eye, whereas the other eye will see far. There are also multifocal contact lenses, but they don’t work very well because with each blink, the lenses move. And most of the people are not able to tolerate that fluctuation in image. “What does presbyopia mean in medical terms?” So in medical terms, it’s the failure of the lens to change its power, by changing its shape.
“What is presbyopia and myopia?” So that’s important because presbyopia occurs in everybody. Whether you are farsighted, you’re plano, or myopic. So in farsighted people, it occurs maturely in their 30’s, myopia people who are nearsighted can read fairly longer into their 40’s and sometimes 50’s until it begins to affect them too.
“Why is presbyopia not a refractory error?” This is a very good question, because the refractory errors we say are myopia, hyperopia and astigmatism because they are static. Presbyopia is a failure of the dynamic part. So just to repeat that, nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism are static problems, so they occur under 40, whereas presbyopia is a dynamic problem.
“Are hyperopia and presbyopia the same?” No, hyperopia just now as we mentioned, is a static problem with the eye being small or the cornea being flat, whereas presbyopia is an ageing issue.
And now, we are going to come to some questions which will be tackled in our next episode, ‘How to kill or treat presbyopia’, so stay tuned for the next episode. Thank you and have a wonderful day.
Everyone will experience presbyopia as they grow older. If you are currently using reading glasses or bifocals, you may be interested in some of the more permanent presbyopia treatment options that are now available. Our experienced Beverly Hills ophthalmologist Rajesh Khanna, MD offers three main forms of presbyopia treatment:
There is no reason you should resign yourself to using reading glasses or bifocals for the rest of your life. Today’s presbyopia treatment options make it possible to enjoy clear vision at all distances again, freeing you to do and enjoy more on a daily basis.
To discuss presbyopia treatment in more detail, please contact The Khanna Institute today or call (888) 339-8143 to schedule a consultation with our experienced Beverly Hills eye doctor. We serve patients in Beverly Hills, Westlake Village, and surrounding areas of Los Angeles, California.