The End Of Glasses? Eye-Shaping Contacts Might Prevent Nearsightedness

Unless you’re a Hipster, eyeglasses are a major pain: kids wearing them get bullied, they’re expensive, they don’t play well with sports, and they can’t make up for perfect 20/20 vision. Finally, there may be a cure for nearsightedness (“Myopia”) on the horizon. Biomedical scientist David Trolio has experimented with a new contact lens that prevents the eye from malforming at a young age in the first place, by refocusing light as it hits the eye. He and his colleagues at State University of New York (SUNY) College of Optometry “successfully reduced the elongation of the eye that causes myopia progression.”

Eyeglasses work by refocusing light onto the retina, the light-sensitive tissue in the back of the eye responsible for transforming photons of light into signals the brain can turn into images. Unfortunately, the bending of the light isn’t perfect, and the eye ends up elongating and compensating even more to make up for the difference, exacerbating the Myopia. “The experimental lenses use different focal powers within a single lens: either alternating focal powers across the lens, or confined to the outer edge,” reports

Details are scant on the new technology, but Trolio hopes that the contact lens will be available for young patients soon.