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Nathan Congdon, Yunfei Wang, Yue Song, Kai Choi, Mingzhi Zhang, Zhongxia Zhou, Zhenling Xie, Liping Li, Xueyu Liu, Abhishek Sharma, Bin Wu, Dennis S. C. Lam; Visual Disability, Visual Function, and Myopia among Rural Chinese Secondary School Children: The Xichang Pediatric Refractive Error Study (X-PRES)—Report 1. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2008;49(7):2888-2894. doi: 10.1167/iovs.07-1160.
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purpose. To evaluate visual acuity, visual function, and prevalence of refractive error among Chinese secondary-school children in a cross-sectional school-based study.
methods. Uncorrected, presenting, and best corrected visual acuity, cycloplegic autorefraction with refinement, and self-reported visual function were assessed in a random, cluster sample of rural secondary school students in Xichang, China.
results. Among the 1892 subjects (97.3% of the consenting children, 84.7% of the total sample), mean age was 14.7 ± 0.8 years, 51.2% were female, and 26.4% were wearing glasses. The proportion of children with uncorrected, presenting, and corrected visual disability (≤6/12 in the better eye) was 41.2%, 19.3%, and 0.5%, respectively. Myopia < −0.5, < −2.0, and < −6.0 D in both eyes was present in 62.3%, 31.1%, and 1.9% of the subjects, respectively. Among the children with visual disability when tested without correction, 98.7% was due to refractive error, while only 53.8% (414/770) of these children had appropriate correction. The girls had significantly (P < 0.001) more presenting visual disability and myopia < −2.0 D than did the boys. More myopic refractive error was associated with worse self-reported visual function (ANOVA trend test, P < 0.001).
conclusions. Visual disability in this population was common, highly correctable, and frequently uncorrected. The impact of refractive error on self-reported visual function was significant. Strategies and studies to understand and remove barriers to spectacle wear are needed.
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