March 2012
Volume 53, Issue 14
ARVO Annual Meeting Abstract  |   March 2012
Uncovering the Effects of Age and Accommodation on the Human Eye through Imaging
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Kathryn Richdale
    College of Optometry, State University of New York, New York, New York
  • Loraine T. Sinnott
    College of Optometry,
    Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio
  • Peter A. Wassenaar
    Department of Radiology,
    Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio
  • Petra Schmalbrock
    Department of Radiology,
    Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio
  • Chiu-Yen Kao
    Deaprtment of Mathmatics,
    Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio
  • Mark A. Bullimore
    College of Optometry, University of Houston, Houston, Texas
  • Karla Zadnik
    College of Optometry,
    Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio
  • Footnotes
    Commercial Relationships  Kathryn Richdale, None; Loraine T. Sinnott, None; Peter A. Wassenaar, None; Petra Schmalbrock, None; Chiu-Yen Kao, None; Mark A. Bullimore, Alcon, Elenza, AMO (C); Karla Zadnik, None
  • Footnotes
    Support  NIH-K23 EY019097, Unrestricted grant from Bausch + Lomb, American Optometric Foundation Ezell Fellowships
Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science March 2012, Vol.53, 2229. doi:
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      Kathryn Richdale, Loraine T. Sinnott, Peter A. Wassenaar, Petra Schmalbrock, Chiu-Yen Kao, Mark A. Bullimore, Karla Zadnik; Uncovering the Effects of Age and Accommodation on the Human Eye through Imaging. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2012;53(14):2229. doi:

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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Purpose: : To evaluate age-related changes in vivo in the accommodative system of a cohort of emmetropic human adults.

Methods: : The right eyes of 26 emmetropic adults, aged 30 - 50 years, were examined using ultrasound, phakometry, keratometry, anterior segment optical coherence tomography, and 7T magnetic resonance imaging. The eye was imaged with increasing accommodative demands from 0 to 6 D, in 2 D increments, and under cycloplegia. Regression and mixed model analyses were used to assess ocular changes with age and accommodation.

Results: : Age was associated with greater lens thickness [3.67 + 0.031 x (Age - 30), p < 0.001], steeper anterior lens curvature [11.82 - 0.11 x (Age - 30), p = 0.001], shallower anterior chamber depth [3.85 - 0.029 x (Age - 30), p < 0.001] and lower equivalent refractive index of the lens [1.457 - 0.001 x (Age - 30), p = 0.002]. Accommodative response was associated with greater lens thickness (3.67 + 0.065 x Response + 0.032 x (Age - 30), p < 0.001), shorter lens equatorial diameter (8.76 - 0.075 x Response, p < 0.001), smaller ciliary body ring diameter (11.60 - 0.068 x Response, p < 0.001) and anterior thickening and commensurate posterior thinning of the ciliary body (Thickness at 1 mm = 0.765 + 0.013 x Response; Thickness at 2 mm = 0.498 - 0.011 x Response; Thickness 3 mm = 0.282 - 0.015 x Response; all locations posterior to the scleral spur, p < 0.01). Age did not moderate the effect of accommodation on ciliary body thickness.

Conclusions: : The overall size and shape of the lens are altered with both accommodation and age. The ciliary muscle continues to contract in a consistent fashion per diopter of accommodation across ages, suggesting that ciliary muscle function is undiminished until at least the fifth decade. Understanding morphological changes in the accommodative system with age will allow the development of better treatment options for presbyopia.

Keywords: imaging/image analysis: clinical • accommodation • presbyopia 

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