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How do hormonal changes affect vision?

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Hormones are biological substances that are synthesized by cells and then secreted into the blood or lymph . They play an essential role in the physiology of the human body. They have various roles and objectives (metabolism, growth, reproduction, etc.) and transmit messages throughout the body. Hormonal changes also affect vision . But in what way?

Hormonal changes and vision: a close relationship at various stages

The effects of hormones on vision vary, of course, depending on gender, age and the stages of life in which they are stimulated. Several hormones have the ability to affect vision . Among the main ones, we find Gonadoliberin (GnRH), which allows the development of reproductive functions. It is therefore clearly a hormone linked to a stage of life since it appears in adolescence, more precisely at the time of puberty.

It is during puberty, in the midst of a growth spurt, that the eye may temporarily lengthen and lead to myopia. This happens in boys as well as in girls.

pregnant woman

A steroid hormone secreted by cells of the ovaries and placenta, progesterone is involved in the menstrual cycle and pregnancy. It also has an impact on vision. Just like estrogen.

These two hormones have the potential to cause dry eye problems. It is not uncommon for pregnancy to alter vision and temporarily impair it. This is often due to an increase in estrogen levels. These last modifying the shape of the cornea. After pregnancy, as the rate returns to normal, these changes subside.

Aging also changes hormones and affects vision. Age leads to a decrease in estrogen levels in women (menopause) and a drop in testosterone levels in men. Visual symptoms then appear recurrently. This is because the structures of the eye lose their elasticity and become dry.

In both men and women, this can lead to dry eyes , blurred vision and even 'to glaucoma . Symptoms that are the consequence of less lubrication of the eyes, because hormones can modify the tear ducts and the lipid layer of the tear film.

Occasional changes due to the vagaries of life

Thyroid hormones and insulin have a clear impact on vision at any age. High tetra-iodothyronine levels , for example, can increase your risk for AMD. In addition, the development of the cones, responsible for color vision, is subject to the level of thyroid hormones.


Diabetes, characterized by a lack of insulin, a hormone secreted by the pancreas and which allows glucose to enter cells and therefore provide energy to the body, also plays a role affects vision.

While diabetics are at risk for retinopathy , low insulin production again leads to low tear production and dry eyes. Type 1 or 2 diabetics are affected.

So there is indeed a correlation between hormones and vision. There is no doubt that other discoveries will allow us to know more!

Source: Lasik