Why not use atropine for asthma
Drip atropine instead of buying glasses?
Less is more
Cohn's idea of using atropine eye drops to treat myopia has not led to approval in this indication in the past 140 years - but it has not been forgotten. For some time now, it has been the focus of interest again. Research results come mainly from Asia, as myopia is even more widespread among children here than in Europe. The tenor of the available clinical studies: The use of atropine eye drops for several months can not only prevent the increase in severe myopia, but also slow the growth of the eye. How exactly this works is not yet known. For a long time it was assumed that excessive accommodation favors the development of myopia and that atropine, as a parasympatholytic, counteracts this mechanism. Animal experiments defeated this theory, however. It is now assumed that the effect occurs on the retina.
Atropine is not easy to use because of its side effects. The first studies were carried out with concentrations of 0.1%. Although this therapy was initially able to stop myopia, the success did not last long: When the drops were stopped, not only did the drops not work, but the myopia often progressed faster (rebound effect). In addition, the children examined needed reading glasses because of the paralysis of their close-up focus and were very sensitive to glare.
A research group from Singapore (Chia et al.) Investigated the question of whether a lower dosage would also be sufficient. 400 myopic children received either 0.5%, 0.1% or 0.01% atropine drops daily for two years and were followed up for a further year after the end of therapy. Surprisingly, the best effect was achieved with the lowest dosage: The myopia increased by -0.72 diopters within the observation period, while the vision decreased by -1.04 diopters below 0.1% and by -1.4 diopters below 0.5%. 15 diopters deteriorated faster. The length of the eyeball also increased the least in the group with the lowest atropine concentration. The effect of the 0.01% drops was also most sustained over a period of five years. Dutch researchers (Polling et al.) Proved that the therapy also works with Europeans and that the success depends on the age of the child. 77 children, 53 of whom were Caucasian, were treated with 0.5% atropine eye drops for one year. Myopia increased by -0.49 diopters per year in children under the age of nine, by only -0.06 diopters in those between the ages of nine and twelve, and in those over the age of twelve it remained stable at +0.02 diopters.
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