What is it about?

We have used Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) to accurately measure the changes in thickness of the choroid in response to retinal defocus before and 24 hours after instillation of one 0.1% atropine eye drop. The thinning of the choroid observed before atropine was abolished 24 hours after atropine instillation.

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Why is it important?

Atropine eye drops are widely used to slow the progressive worsening of myopia (short sight) in children, but its mechanism of action is unknown. This study suggests that atropine interferes with the signalling between the retina and sclera to prevent scleral expansion in myopia.


This was a very satisfying piece of work to be involved with, as it clearly demonstrated that atropine inhibits one of the eye's functional response to hyperopic retinal defocus which is a known stimulus to eye growth and myopia development.

John Phillips
The University of Auckland

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This page is a summary of: Effect of Atropine Eye Drops on Choroidal Thinning Induced by Hyperopic Retinal Defocus, Journal of Ophthalmology, January 2018, Hindawi Publishing Corporation,
DOI: 10.1155/2018/8528315.
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