Do UV-radiation blocking contact lenses delay presbyopia?
The long-term use of ultraviolet radiation (UVR) blocking contact lenses is helpful in maintaining the eye’s ability to focus, in addition to protecting the critical limbal region, according to a study.
Researchers analyzed the ocular health of 210 pre-presbyopic patients who had worn contact lenses for ≥5 years; half of the patients in this study wore lenses made of material incorporating a UVR-blocking filter. Each group was matched for age, sex, race, body-mass-index, diet, lifestyle, UVR exposure, refractive error, and visual acuity.
Accommodation was measured subjectively with a push-up test and overcoming lens-induced defocus. Objective stimulus response and dynamic measures of the accommodative response were quantified with an open-field aberrometer.
Compared to the control patients, those wearing UVR-blocking contact lenses had lower limbal redness (P = 0.035). Bulbar conjunctival redness was not different between the groups.
The subjective and objective accommodative response was higher in the group of patients wearing UVR-blocking contact lenses, but the differences difference was not significant. In UVR-blocking contact lenses wearing eyes, accommodative latency was shorter (P = 0.003). No significant difference in macular pigment optical density with UVR filtration was found.
The authors concluded that the results suggest “presbyopia may be delayed in long-term UVR-blocking contact lenses wearers.”
Wolffsohn JS, Dhallu S, Aujla M, et al. International multi-centre study of potential benefits of ultraviolet radiation protection using contact lenses. Cont Lens Anterior Eye. 2022;101593. doi: 10.1016/j.clae.2022.101593. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 35431131.