Analysis of treatment response about low-dose (0.01%) atropine eye-drops in myopic children


Introduction: Myopia usually commences during primary school and progresses until the mean age of 16 years. Topical low-dose (0.01%) atropine eye-drop appears to be safe and efficacious for myopia control in children. However, in some cases, a higher concentration of atropine is required in some cases because low-dose atropine treatment is not effective.

Methods: This is a retrospective study among young myopic children between 5 and 15 years with myopia progression > 0.50 D/year. We selected patients treated with low-dose atropine (0.01%) eye-drops for 12 months and conducted a comparative analysis of the group with good responder and poor responder. Patients were classified as good responders if spherical equivalent refractive error (SE) progression was ⩽ 0.50 D after 12 months of treatment and poor responders if SE progression > 0.50 D. The prognostic factors before and after treatment were analyzed in two groups.

Results: A total of 68 eyes were included. Low-dose (0.01%) atropine eye-drops have a good treatment response in 54% of patients. In the good responder group (n = 37), the mean rate of myopia progression after 12 months of treatment (0.36 ± 0.17 D) was significantly slower compared with the baseline progression (p < 0.001). Good responders have smaller changes in axial length (AL) elongation and SE than poor responders (p < 0.001). The only adverse event was temporary near vision difficulty (10%), photophobia (10%), and mild pupil dilation (30%).

Discussion: The AL elongation is an important indicator for monitoring the treatment response. Children with a family history of myopia at a young age may not respond well to low-dose (0.01%) atropine eye-drops. In these cases, increasing the concentration of atropine eye-drops should be considered.

Jeon GS, Hong IH, Lee JH, Song TG, Lee TY, Han JR. Analysis of treatment response about low-dose (0.01%) atropine eye-drops in myopic children. Eur J Ophthalmol. 2021 Aug 16:11206721211038817. doi: 10.1177/11206721211038817. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34399596.