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The exact fitting of reading lenses to the eyes of studiously inclined persons past middle age, is either one of the most simple or one of the most complicated things that the oculist is ever called upon to do. In the absence of astigmatism and of a difference in the refraction of the eyes, the fitting of reading lenses is a matter of no difficulty. When there exists 0.5D. or more of astigmatism in one or both eyes, and a difference of 0.25D. or more in the refraction of the eyes perfectly fitting lenses for reading are seldom obtained.
Commonly but little care is given to the fitting of reading lenses to the eyes of persons above 40 years of age. Ordinarily the weakest convex lenses with which the patient is able to read the smallest print at a distance of 22 cm. (8.5 inches) from the eyes, are prescribed.
JENKINS NB. MISMANAGEMENT OF THE EYES OF READERS. JAMA. 1899;XXXII(19):1032. doi:10.1001/jama.1899.92450460014001g
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