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Huamao Miao, Xingtao Zhou, Xiaofen Mo; Refractive status and influential factors in piano-playing children. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2017;58(8):2378.
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The eyeballs could continue elongating due to improper environmental activities after the emmetropilization process. Piano playing is a special kind of near work; the eyesight moves around between the keyboards and the music score, and thus adjustments should be constantly made to maintain a clear retinal imaging. Whether long-period and high intensive piano practicing could affect the eye growth remains unknown. This pilot study was conducted to investigate refractive status and related factors in a group of piano-playing children.
One hundred and twenty-two schoolchildren who attended annual piano grading tests were enrolled. Cycloplegic refraction was examined. A questionnaire was filled in by each of their parents. Time per week spent on near work were calculated as the summation of time per week spent on reading/writing after school, watching television, using computer, using mobile phone/tablets and piano practicing. Time per week spent on activities were calculated as the summation of time per week spent on outdoor activities and indoor activities.
Seventy-three percent of the children were myopic (spherical equivalent [SE] diopters equal to or higher than -0.50D) and with mean SE of -3.31±1.83D. They spent longer time on near work than those without myopia (38.11 hours vs. 31.81 hours per week, P<0.05). More specifically, myopic children spent more time on reading/writing after school (24.25 hours vs. 21.89 hours) and using phone/tablets (6.74 hours vs. 4.70 hours), and slightly more time on watching television (4.01 hours vs. 2.92 hours) and using computer (3.11 hours vs. 2.30 hours); while they spent similar time on piano practicing (5.04 hours vs. 5.02 hours). Besides, Myopic children spent less time on activities (9.12 hours vs. 12.59 hours per week, P<0.05), not only on indoor activities (3.96 hours vs. 5.77 hours) but also on outdoor activities (5.17 hours vs. 6.82 hours). Moreover, logistic regression analysis revealed that children with older age (odds ratio [OR]=2.18, P<0.05), spent less time spent on activities (OR=0.88, P<0.05), and had more myopic parents (OR=2.34, P=0.07) were at a higher risk to become myopia.
About forty-five minutes spent on piano practicing per day does not necessarily affect the eye growth. To avoid myopia progression, piano-playing children are suggested to spend less time on near work and more time on indoor/outdoor activities.
This is an abstract that was submitted for the 2017 ARVO Annual Meeting, held in Baltimore, MD, May 7-11, 2017.
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