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Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2013 Feb 7;54(2):1095-105. doi: 10.1167/iovs.12-10619.

Quantification of age-related and per diopter accommodative changes of the lens and ciliary muscle in the emmetropic human eye.

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College of Optometry, State University of New York, New York, NY, USA.



To calculate age-related and per diopter (D) accommodative changes in crystalline lens and ciliary muscle dimensions in vivo in a single cohort of emmetropic human adults ages 30 to 50 years.


The right eyes of 26 emmetropic adults were examined using ultrasonography, phakometry, anterior segment optical coherence tomography, and high resolution magnetic resonance imaging. Accommodation was measured both subjectively and objectively.


In agreement with previous research, older age was linearly correlated with a thicker lens, steeper anterior lens curvature, shallower anterior chamber, and lower lens equivalent refractive index (all P < 0.01). Age was not related to ciliary muscle ring diameter (CMRD) or lens equatorial diameter (LED). With accommodation, lens thickness increased (+0.064 mm/D, P < 0.001), LED decreased (-0.075 mm/D, P < 0.001), CMRD decreased (-0.105 mm/D, P < 0.001), and the ciliary muscle thickened anteriorly (+0.013 to +0.026 mm/D, P < 0.001) and thinned posteriorly (-0.011 to -0.015, P < 0.01). The changes per diopter of accommodation in LED, CMRD, and ciliary muscle thickness were not related to subject age.


The per diopter ciliary muscle contraction is age independent, even as total accommodative amplitude declines. Quantifying normal biometric dimensions of the accommodative structures and changes with age and accommodative effort will further the development of new IOLs designed to harness ciliary muscle forces.

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