Br J Ophthalmol 90:546-550 doi:10.1136/bjo.2005.081992
  • Clinical science
    • Scientific reports

Visual outcomes for high myopic patients with or without myopic maculopathy: a 10 year follow up study

  1. Y-F Shih1,
  2. T-C Ho1,
  3. C K Hsiao2,
  4. L L-K Lin1
  1. 1Department of Ophthalmology, College of Medicine, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan
  2. 2Institute of Epidemiology, College of Public Health, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan
  1. Correspondence to: Yung-Feng Shih MD, Department of Ophthalmology, National Taiwan University Hospital, No 7, Chung Shan South Road, Taipei, Taiwan; yfshih{at}
  • Accepted 6 December 2005


Aim: To evaluate the visual outcomes for high myopic patients aged 40 years and older with or without myopic maculopathy.

Methods: 552 high myopic (spherical equivalent ⩽−6.0D or axial length ⩾26.5 mm) patients were enrolled in the study, 230 cases with myopic maculopathy (at least lacquer cracks were identified) and 322 cases without maculopathy. The initial and final visual acuity (VA) (after 10 years) was compared between two groups. Additionally, the relation between sex, age, refraction, and axial length was analysed to find out the possible risk factors associated with visual outcome in myopic maculopathy.

Results: In 92% of patients aged 40–49, final VA was better than 20/40 after 10 years of follow up. However, it was less than 40% in those older than 60 years. For more than 50% of patients older than 40 years of age with maculopathy, their vision had decreased more than two lines in Snellen VA after 10 years of follow up, compared to only 4.3% of analogues without myopic maculopathy. Patchy atrophy and choroidal neovascularisation in myopic macular degeneration groups showed poorer visual outcome than lacquer cracks in the macular lesion group. Other prognostic factors of visual outcomes were myopic refraction, axial length, and ageing.

Conclusions: Clearly, prognosis for patients with maculopathy is poorer than for those without maculopathy. Refractive status, axial length, and ageing are the main factors involved in determining the visual outcomes. The macular grading also affects the visual outcome for high myopic patients.