WHO-BHVI joint Global Scientific Meeting on Myopia discusses the rapidly rising prevalence and impact of myopia

Key scientists, researchers and clinical experts from around the world discussed the rapidly increasing prevalence, the vision, social and economic impact of myopia and reports that myopia is now the leading cause of blindness in older people in Tajimi, Japan1 and in Shanghai, China.2 Professor Holden3 reported that BHVI had estimated that 5 billion people will have myopia in 2050, with almost a billion having high myopia. Professor Holden said that “vision impairment and blindness was rising in children from uncorrected myopia and in adults from the pathological consequences of myopia later in life.”


The meeting reviewed evidence on the epidemiology, aetiology, vision consequences, pathology, social and economic impact, morbidity associated with, and interventions that may be helpful in reducing the threat of myopia. Dr Serge Resnikoff said that “a major contribution from the meeting was the definition and description of the retinal condition that causes blindness with myopia so that future surveys can accurately record the number of people with vision impairment and blindness from myopia.”

For more information about the meeting and Brien Holden Vision Institute, visit www.brienholdenvision.org .

  1. Iwase A, Araie M, Tomidokoro A, et al. Prevalence and causes of low vision and blindness in a Japanese adult population: the Tajimi Study. Ophthalmology 2006;113:1354-62.
  2. Wu L, Sun X, Zhou X, Weng C. Causes and 3-year-incidence of blindness in Jing-An District, Shanghai, China 2001-2009. BMC ophthalmology 2011;11:10.
  3. Holden, B.A., Fricke,T.R., Wilson, D.A., Resnikoff, S., Jong, M., Naidoo, K.S., Sankaridurg, P.
  4. Prevalence of myopia and high myopia and temporal trends from 2000 to 2050; BHVI Report, 2015.

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