To compare the effects of rigid gas-permeable contact lenses (RGPs)and soft contact lenses (SCLs) on myopia progression in children.
We randomly assigned 116 subjects to wear RGPs or SCLs. Subjects underwentcycloplegic autorefraction, keratometry, and A-scan ultrasonographic axiallength measurements at each annual visit. All analyses were conducted accordingto the original randomization assignment. The primary outcome measure wasthe 3-year change in spherical equivalent cycloplegic autorefraction.
The mean ± SD spherical equivalent cycloplegic refractiveerror progressed –1.56 ± 0.95 diopters (D) for RGPwearers and –2.19 ± 0.89 D for the SCL wearers duringthe 3 years of the study (analysis of covariance [ANCOVA], P<.001). The axial growth of the eyes was not significantly differentbetween treatment groups (ANCOVA, P = .57).The steep corneal meridian of the RGP wearers steepened 0.62 ± 0.60D, and that of the SCL wearers steepened 0.88 ± 0.57 D duringthe 3 years (ANCOVA, P = .01).
The RGP wearers’ myopia progressed less than that of the SCL wearers.The corneal curvature of the SCL wearers steepened more than that of the RGPwearers, but the axial growth was not significantly different between thegroups. Most refractive error treatment effect was limited to the first yearof the trial. The results of the study provide information for eye care practitionersto share with their patients, but they do not indicate that RGPs should beprescribed primarily for myopia control.