The Cure of Imperfect Sight by Treatment
Without Glasses - online book

The Original Bates Method, for correcting vision defects

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36 Accepted Theory of Accommodation
March 16, 1895, he was seen by Dr. Davis, who found that the left eye now had an accommodative range of from ten to eighteen inches. In this case no change was observed in the cornea. The results of the Donders tests were similar to those of the earlier case, and under scopolamine the eye accommodated as before, but not quite so easily. No accommodation was observed in the right eye.
These and similar cases have been the cause of great embarrassment to those who feel called upon to reconcile them with the accepted theories. With the retinoscope the lensless eye can be seen to accommodate; but the theory of Helmholtz has dominated the ophthalmological mind so strongly that even the evidence of objective tests was not believed. The apparent act of accommodation was said not to be real, and many theories, very curious and unscientific, have been advanced to account for it. Davis is of the opinion that "the slight change in the curvature of the cornea, and its slight advancement ob served in some cases, may, in those cases, account for some of the accommodative power present, but it is such a small factor that it may be elminated entirely, since in some of the most marked cases of accommodation in aphakial eyes no such changes have been observed."
The voluntary production of astigmatism is another stumbling block to the supporters of the accepted theo ries, as it involves a change in the shape of the cornea, and such a change is not compatible with the idea of an "inextensible"1 eyeball. It seems to have given them less trouble, however, than the accommodation of the lensless
1 Inasmuch as the eye is inextensible, it cannot adapt itself for the per ception of objects situated at different distances by increasing the length of its axis, but only by increasing the refractive power of its lens.-De Schweinitz: Diseases of the Eye, eighth edition, 1916, pp. 35-36.