Eyesight decreases during pregnancy

It is a well known fact that pregnant women undergo important hormonal changes throughout their pregnancy. These fluctuations can cause significant physiological changes, especially in regards to cardiovascular, blood and immune system functions.

However, few people know that pregnancy can also affect visual acuity. As a matter of fact, some pregnant women may experience a decrease in their eyes' ability to focus on objects.

Several pregnant women suffer from water retention during their pregnancy. When fluid increase affects the eyes, it can thicken the cornea, which is the membrane covering the surface of the eyes. This may cause a change in the curvature of the cornea, which affects the formation of images on the retina. For some women, this will result in an increase of myopia during the second and third trimesters of pregnancy. 

Fortunately, these changes are usually temporary and will disappear after the birth of the baby. Informing your health care professional of any eyesight change you experience is important, especially if you have other health problems, such as glaucoma, diabetes or gestational hypertension.


Sushma Sharma, Rekha Wuntakal, Aashish Anand, Tarun K Sharma, Gabrielle Downey. (2011) Pregnancy and the eye. The Obstetrician & Gynaecologist Vol. 8 (3): 141-146. 

Hodge C, Roberts T. (2004) Pregnancy and ocular complications. Eye series--22. Aust Fam Physician. 33(12):1023-4.

Omoti AE, Waziri-Erameh JM, Okeigbemen VW. (2008) A review of the changes in the ophthalmic and visual system in pregnancy. Afr J Reprod Health. 12(3):185-96.

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