----- Original Message -----
Sent: Thursday, September 02, 2004 6:12 PM
Subject: Worried about my son
I am Padma and I live in California. My son who is 8
years old has been told last week that he has to put glasses as his vision
is 20/40. They have prescribed him -1.00 lens. My husband is 41 years and
has perfect vision. I have myopia and got them when I was 20 years. The
doctor thinks it is in my son's genes to get it. But I do not agree with
him. Genes or no genes, I want my son to have very good vision since he
dreams to become a pilot.
I have extensively searched the web in the last two
days and am surprised (and confused) about the theory of plus lens for
myopia. I am desperate not to put on the glasses for my son as I know that
once he puts them on he is going to live with them for ever. I am eagerly
waiting for your reply.
Meanwhile, I am trying to improve his diet by
including carrots, almonds and eggs on a daily basis.
I am eagerly waiting for your reply and advice.
Desperate and worried mother
One thing I do recommend.
Do not do ANYTHING for at least two to four weeks.
Your son is at no risk at all.
You should research everything you can find. Do
not attempt anything until you feel you are "on the right track".
I would love to send you to Steve Leung OD who would
help you with this work -- since he his helping his own children in ths
manner -- but he is in Hong Kong.
His site is:
Spend a great time thinking about this issue -- before
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Friday, September 03, 2004 11:09 AM
Subject: RE: Worried about my son
you for your prompt response. I understand that the 'plus lens' concept
requires constant and consistent efforts which is a little difficult for an
8 year old. But I also do not want my son get hooked on to glasses. I will
surely keep your advice in mind and will visit the chinamyopia website.
forward to your advice anytime in this regard.
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Subject: Prescription Practices -- Under-Prescription and
I believe that we "the pubic" must learn to take
the "next step" towards true prevention.
This can only be done if "we" learn to accept
an optometrist who will prescribe a "plus" when
we are on the "threshold". Steve Leung will do it -- because
he his helping his own child in that manner.
Here is some background information. I believe
that the ODs are driven to "react" to us -- after
we get into it. They are never permitted to
agressively use the plus when we are on
the threshold -- and that is OUR FAULT.
Eye-doctors are trained to deal with a great mass of people
entering a shop. This is the way it has been for the last 400
In some ways, you can argue that the general public will
NEVER understand anything other that the instant-sharpness
produced by a minus lens. Most ODs and MDs know it and therefore
attempt to keep the strength of the minus lens to a minimum.
The ODs are never trained to cultivate your intelligence or,
more importantly, your motivation on the subject of
For me, it necessarily must be your motivation and
intelligence that resolves this issue for you.
Remarks on ODs:
1. Very few in medicine talk to a person about prevention --
because they know the person will not take prevention
seriously. For that reason, they never engage you in this
type of "intellectual" choice. I obviously wish they could.
2. Under-Prescription: All know "something" about the bad effect
of the minus lens -- but they do not know how to express
their concerns. So what they do is to "not-prescribe" the
minus lens if they can possibly do so. However, if the child
is at 20/70, they then have no choice and so they use the
weakest lens possible to bring the distant vision up to
20/40. These are "under-prescribers."
3. Over-Prescription: The "over-prescribes" are not cautious.
They will take a child that PASSES the room wall-chart, at
20/40 put him in a darkened room, and have him reading
through the small lenses of a "phoropter". They also
prescribe to "Best Visual Acuity". By that I mean the "crank
up" on the minus lens, and will produce 20/18, 20/15 and even
20/12 -- because they like the "impression" this has on the
child and parent. Thus a child that has 20/40 winds up with
a -2 to -3 diopter lens, when strictly speaking -- he does
not "need" it. That is the major reason why I say you MUST
check your own vision.
4. No one in optometry or ophthalmology has ever been able to get
beyond this simplistic method set up a 400 years ago.
5. The "box-camera" theory, and "words" like "emmetropia" and
"ametropia" simply reflect this concept and practice --
because they grew out of this simplistic practice.
6. As a practical matter, I realize (as Dr. Raphaelson stated)
that the ODs have no choice in the matter -- other than the
above. I attempt in every way possible to use NEUTRAL words
to describe the behavior of the natural eye -- to avoid the
obvious "combat" and "anger" that develops. But obviously I
can not avoid the hubris that develops regardless of my
7. I hold no "grudge" against any OD. I only hope that a better
method of working towards true-prevention can be developed.
When I offer my hand in friendship on sci.med.vision, you see
what the reaction is. I do not see how I could ever work
with the "mind-set" of people like Mike Tyner. The mind-set
is truly blind. Equally, I could work with a man like Mr.
Steve Leung at an Aeronautical College, were a more rational
and respectful method could be developed for true-prevention.
As an engineer, I can never deal with a great mass of people
entering a shop. I can only deal only with other engineers and
scientists who can form deeper judgments and take responsibility
for this difficult but honest preventive work.
Thus there are two "professions" involved. The profession of
facts and science -- and the profession of dealing with a great
mass of people, were a "quick-fix" is the only solution.
I am pleased you have chosen the "high road" in working
towards a better solution for yourself and your child.
Hi Dr. Leung
I am Padma and I live in California, USA. My
son is 8 years old and has been examined last week when the docotor said
that his vision is 20/40 and he will need -1.00 lens. I am really worried
and do not want him to start wearing glasses at this age. My husband has no
vision problems. I had nearsighteness when I was 20 years old and I am
wearing glasses since then. I was looking at the internet for alternate
choices and came across your website. It is very encouraging. Please advice
me as to what I should do for my son. Should I start putting the plus lens
for him. What should be the power of his lens. Should he use it while
writing and reading or can he use it for viewing television .
Please I look forward to your reply and
Thank you once again for such a good website
> Thanks for inquiry.
> We don't call Dr. for optometrist, simply Mr. is good enough in HK.
> 20/40 vision is not so bad, I knew it is the minium legal requirement
> for driving in the States. That means no desperate need for minus
> Remember, the earlier age put on minus glasses, the faster naked eye
> deteriorates. I hope your son hasn't been given the minus glasses.
> the eye will only get worse once it started myopia if nothing is
implemented for prevention.
> Distance of near work is critical for the development of myopia. The
> closer range of near-work, the greater value of accommodation exerts
> by an eye. Accommodation == 100/distance (cm).
> The idea of plus lens is to reduce the burden of accommodation by an eye
> prolong near work. Its major goal is for prevention from getting worse.
> You should consider the use of plus for his long term visual welfare
> in serious.
> For the power of plus lens, you have to consider his habitual reading
> distance and take the above equation for calculation.
> The more he can tolerate, the more he will be paid off in the long run.
> Patience is a must!
> He has to put on the PLUS whenever it is possible especial for everything
> I hope once you grasp the underlie principle of plus lens, don't let
> your child be one of the myopic folk. And spread out the message of
> prevention as far as you can.
> Steve H Leung
> cc Otis
Padma Eyyunni writes:
> Dear Mr. Leung
> Thank you for your prompt reply. I will surely work on your advice. I
> have one more question. Should my son take out the plus lens everytime
> he looks at the chalkboard in the class room or when he is looking at
> something far away. What happens if he has the plus lens when he is
> watchng far away things? Is it going to harm his eyes or just that he
> will not be seeing distance things clearly when using a plus lens.
> Thank you
Dear Padma Eyyunni
This is Optometrist Mr Steve H. Leung's Reply:
Q1.Should my son take out the plus lens everytime he looks
at the chalkboard
in the class room or when he is looking at something far
(For stronger and faster effectiveness of PLUS, you can consider the
action. That means your son's eyes are subject to extended period of
relaxation for better outcome.)
Q2.What happens if he has the plus lens when he is watchng
far away things?
(Simply he cannot see clear through the
glasses -- fogging.)
Q3.Is it going to harm his eyes or just that he will not
be seeing distance things clearly when using a plus lens.
(NO. Unless he is wearing the glasses for outdoor
fast moving activities, I
don't see any harmful effect of the glasses.)
By the way, we will posted those Question and answer in
Webmaster of Chinamyopia.org
2004.9.11 Hong Kong , SAR, CHINA