Electrostimulation is effective in improving near vision in patients with early presbyopic emmetropia, according to research from Italy.
In the knowledge that pulsed electrostimulation works for atrophic muscles, Dr. Luca Gualdi and colleagues theorised that stimulating the ciliary muscle would increase its potency, enabling it to overcome the higher resistance of the ciliary system that stiffens due to aging.
They used the non-invasive, innovative method to stimulate ciliary muscle contraction, performing four sessions (one every two weeks over two months) of bilateral pulsed microelectrostimulation on the anterior segment of the eyes of 27 patients with 26mA for eight minutes.
To maintain the benefit, it is necessary to periodically repeat the treatment
Short-term results (up to two months), supported ciliary muscle contraction to restore accommodation as a promising treatment for presbyopia.
The researchers expect electrostimulation will be more effective in young presbyopic patients (40 to 50 years) when the ciliary muscle starts needing more strength to move a stiffer, bigger lens. Additionally, because presbyopia precedes age-related cataract, they suggested the treatment be associated with other treatments that aim to reverse the lens aging process.
They noted, “Because ciliary muscle contraction to restore accommodation is a passive exercise, the effect of electrostimulation is expected to last for a limited time period and then progressively regress. To maintain the benefit, it is necessary to periodically repeat the treatment, which requires developing customised programs based on the individual response related to the observed effect.”
The study was published in Journal of Refractive Surgery. 2017;33(9):578-583