Gender Is Not The Reason Women Need Glasses Before Men
June 25, 2012

Gender Is Not The Reason Women Need Glasses Before Men

Researchers note that women need glasses/bifocals much sooner than men, and that things like women´s arm length and reading distances should be thought about when doctors prescribe glasses for women. This is according to a paper in Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science.

The investigators recently found the evidence by performing a meta-analysis using nine cross-sectional tests comparing the commonness and depth of presbyopia (the loss of nearsightedness that come with age in both men and women). This test goes on to determine what, if any, differences in presbyopia exist between men and women.

While the findings of these studies do not show gender specific reasons in the eye´s ability to focus, it does show that women´s eyes have a stronger need for reading glasses compared to men in the same age group.

"These findings could impact global vision care in multiple ways," said Hickenbotham. "The findings reinforce the need for presbyopia correction programs for women – a group that often has greater unmet vision needs in developing countries. It also points out that presbyopia is a multi-factorial problem and requires solutions that are tailored to each individual."

Doctors are encouraged by investigators to do more than check the eye´s ability to focus when diagnosing presbyopia, they also encourage more study. In particular, the paper states longitudinal studies that consider the interaction between the preferred reading distance and the change in adjustive amplitude across time for males and females could help determine to what extent biological factors or environmental factors plays a role in the loss of focusing ability with increasing age.