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During pregnancy there are multiple changes in the body of the pregnant woman. It is known that one of these changes is fluid retention, but what is not so well known is that this retention can also occur in some of the structures of the eye, causing the curvature of the cornea and the thickness of the lens to increase, giving as The result is the appearance of a slight myopia of between 0.5 or even 1 diopter.
This accumulation or retention of fluids in the ocular structures usually occurs between weeks 31 and 41 of gestation, and usually disappears two months after delivery. As a consequence, it is not necessary to adapt glasses or change the lenses of the same if you were already mypes because vision will be restored. Unless poor vision interferes with daily tasks, such as driving, in which case all myopia would be corrected and when water retention disappeared, the normal level would be returned.
There are a few cases in which this increase in myopia can be permanent, so ophthalmologists often recommend postponing refractive eye surgery if the patient plans to become a mother.
In the case of pregnant women with high myopia, that is to say with severe myopia or high amount, it is advisable to go to periodic ophthalmological reviews to make an evaluation of the fundus. High myopia is not only the presence of diopters, it is considered an ocular pathology. It causes damage to the ocular structures, mainly the retina, such as the thinning and fragility of the layers of the retina as a result of excessive elongation (elongation) of the eye. Retinal detachment occurs when, due to a blow, a tear or excessive traction, the retina or part of it separates from its position, which can cause partial or total loss of vision.
During childbirth, intense contractions of the abdominal muscles occur, producing alterations in the pressure, which is transmitted through the blood vessels to the eye. Under normal conditions, a healthy eye is not damaged by these pressure increases, however, if the retina is damaged it runs the risk of detaching. If abnormalities are observed in the retina that may lead to retinal detachment, the ophthalmologist can treat them with laser photocoagulation or, if necessary, contraindicate vaginal delivery and recommend to the gynecologist that it be by cesarean section. In these cases, the solution is complex: on the one hand there is the risk of the eye, which is difficult to establish objectively, with the consequences of an unnecessary caesarean section by the gynecologist (whose complications cannot be established objectively either). Scientific evidence does not provide definitive data for or against these decisions.
Cecilia Martínez Ordás
Optician - Optometrist
Expert in Child Audiology
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