Presbyopia: Symptoms & Signs

Medically Reviewed on 9/10/2019

Presbyopia is a loss of the eye's ability to change focus to see near objects. People sometimes describe it as age-related farsightedness. It typically becomes apparent in people in their 40s.

The first symptom of presbyopia is often the need to hold reading material farther away and difficulty reading small print. The signs and symptoms come on gradually and worsen with time. Other associated symptoms can include blurred vision, eye strain, and headaches, particularly after doing close or detailed reading or work.

Causes of presbyopia

While medical professionals do not fully understand the reasons for this change, presbyopia is associated with aging, and occurs when the lens of the eye becomes less elastic over time.

Other presbyopia symptoms and signs

  • Blurred Vision
  • Difficulty Reading Small Print
  • Eyestrain
  • Headache
  • Need to Hold Reading Material Farther Away


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Kasper, D.L., et al., eds. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 19th Ed. United States: McGraw-Hill Education, 2015.