This study was performed to gain age correlated normal values for the pupillary near reflex.
Accommodation and pupillary near reaction were measured by means of simultaneous infrared video retinoscopy and pupillography in 64 healthy volunteers aged between 5 and 55 years. Measurements were done at a reduced, near mesopic, light condition with accommodation to 10, 14, 20 and 33 cm.
The pupillary near response varied highly with age: persons younger than 20 years of age showed a significantly smaller pupillary near response as compared to those older than 20 years. In most of the children younger than 10 years the pupil near response was very small (less than 10% constriction) at accommodation distances longer than 10 cm. There was a significant difference between the age groups younger and older than 20 but no statistically significant differences within these age groups.
A change of the pupillary near reaction takes place around the age of 20. We conclude that this change does not only reflect the aging of the cristalline lens but is due to an age related change of the supranuclear control.