If you are reading this news report with a pair of glasses, chances are you are among the growing number of Chinese teenagers who have bad eyesight. According to a new survey by the Polytechnic University (PolyU)'s Centre for Myopia Research, more Chinese students suffer from shortsightedness compared with mixed or expatriate youth. However, researchers said it had nothing to do with the study environment. The results, released last week, show that 85-88 per cent of students at local schools are shortsighted, while the figure for international schools is 60 to 66 per cent. But statistics also show that 80 per cent of ethnic Chinese students at international schools are shortsighted, similar to the percentage of shortsighted students at local schools. This finding suggests that Chinese students have a higher rate of myopia regardless of where they study. The rate of myopia for mixed and expatriate students is 65 per cent and 43 per cent, respectively. Dr Carly Lam Siu-yin, head of the PolyU study, said although there was not enough evidence to conclude that genetic make-up caused myopia among the Chinese, it 'definitely plays a role'. The study was conducted among 1,078 students aged between 13 and 15 from six international and three local schools. One way of correcting shortsightedness among children is to wear corrective lenses. The effectiveness of Orthokeratology (Ortho-K) lenses, as the corrective lenses are called, was proved in a different study conducted by the university. Contrary to results from a previous study, Dr Pauline Cho Wong Hie-hua said her research team found the lenses effective. But she said users, especially younger ones, should be careful because there had been cases of children suffering permanent eye damage from wearing the lenses.