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J.M. Holmes, D.A. Leske, D.O. Hodge, J.P. Burke; Pediatric Cataract: A Population Based Study . Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2003;44(13):4466.
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Purpose: We performed a population-based study to determine the incidence and etiology of visually significant cataract in a defined pediatric population. Methods: Using the resources of the Rochester Epidemiology Project, we identified all potential cases of cataract in pediatric patients (0-17 years), residing in Olmsted County, during a 20-year period (1978 to 1997). Olmsted County is located in the upper mid-west of the US, with a population of approximately 130,000. County residence was confirmed at the time of diagnosis. The medical records of the potential cases were reviewed and standardized criteria were used to define visually significant cataract. We classified cataract as infantile, presumed infantile, traumatic, developmental, and associated with systemic or other ocular disease. Annual age-adjusted and sex-adjusted incidence rates were calculated based on the 1990 US White population. Results: Forty incident cases of visually significant pediatric cataract were identified during the 20-year study period, giving an annual age- and sex-adjusted incidence of 6.8 per 100,000 (95% CI 4.7 to 9.0). The most common type of cataract in this pediatric population was infantile (52%), approximately half of which were "presumed infantile". Other types were traumatic (25%), developmental (15%), associated with systemic disease (5%, diabetes) and associated with ocular disease (3%). Sixty-two percent of infantile cataracts occurred in females, while 100% of traumatic cataracts occurred in males. Conclusions: Using population-based medical record retrieval methods for studying visually significant pediatric cataract, the most common etiology was infantile, followed by traumatic. From a public health perspective, our data suggest that resources should be directed toward early detection of infantile cataract and improved prevention of traumatic cataract.
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