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Shaheen P. Shah, Amy E. Taylor, Jane C. Sowden, Nicola K. Ragge, Isabelle Russell-Eggitt, Jugnoo S. Rahi, Clare E. Gilbert, for the Surveillance of Eye Anomalies (SEA-UK) Special Interest Group; Anophthalmos, Microphthalmos, and Typical Coloboma in the United Kingdom: A Prospective Study of Incidence and Risk. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2011;52(1):558-564. doi: 10.1167/iovs.10-5263.
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Anophthalmos, microphthalmos, and typical coloboma (AMC) form an interrelated spectrum of congenital eye anomalies that can cause significant visual loss and cosmetic disfigurement in children. This prospective study of children born in the United Kingdom was undertaken to determine the incidence of AMC diagnosed by ophthalmologists and to explore sociodemographic risks.
Recruitment was achieved though an established active surveillance system of U.K. ophthalmologists supported by a new research network of interested specialists, the Surveillance of Eye Anomalies (SEA-UK) Special Interest Group. It started October 1, 2006, and continued over 18 months.
One hundred thirty-five children were newly diagnosed with AMC. Typical colobomatous defects were the commonest phenotype, and anophthalmos was rare (n = 7). Both eyes were affected in 55.5% of the children. The cumulative incidence of AMC by age 16 years was 11.9 per 100,000 (95% CI, 10.9–15.4). Of the children examined, 41.5% had not seen an ophthalmologist by 3 months of age. The incidence in Scotland was nearly double that in England and Wales. The children of Pakistani ethnicity had a 3.7 (95% CI, 1.9–7.5) times higher risk of AMC than did white children. There was some evidence to suggest a higher incidence in the more socioeconomically deprived. The sibling risk ratio was 210 (95% CI, 25–722).
This is the first prospective study of AMC, and it establishes the frequency across the United Kingdom. Comparisons with data quoted in the literature are difficult because study methodologies differ, but the frequency appears to be lower than that quoted for other developed countries. There are geographic and ethnic variations in incidence that warrant further investigation.
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