April 2014
Volume 55, Issue 13
ARVO Annual Meeting Abstract  |   April 2014
Photoscreening for Refractive Error and Strabismus With a Smartphone App
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Joannah M Vaughan
    Elks Children, Casey Eye Institute, OHSU, Portland, OR
  • Talitha Dale
    Ophthalmology, Casey Eye Institute, OHSU, Portland, OR
  • Alex Choy
    Gobiquity Mobile Health, Inc.,, Aliso Viejo, CA
  • Footnotes
    Commercial Relationships Joannah Vaughan, None; Talitha Dale, None; Alex Choy, Gobiquity.com (E)
  • Footnotes
    Support None
Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science April 2014, Vol.55, 436. doi:
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      Joannah M Vaughan, Talitha Dale, Alex Choy; Photoscreening for Refractive Error and Strabismus With a Smartphone App. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2014;55(13):436.

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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To detect risk factors for amblyopia using a smartphone app.


The GoCheck Kids photoscreening app (Gobiquity Mobile Health, Inc., Aliso Viejo, CA) was used with an iPhone 5. The app takes standardized flash photographs at a target working distance of 28 inches in 2 modes (portrait and landscape). Refraction was measured using crescent width, pupil diameter, and corneal diameter from the 2 photographs, according to the eccentric photorefraction principle. Strabismus was measured by the position of the corneal reflex relative to the pupil and cornea. Children between the ages of 3 and 5 years referred for eye examination at the Elks Preschool Vision Screening Program were examined on 1 day. Photoscreening was performed in a dimly lit room prior to cycloplegic eye drops. Clinical examination, including cover test and cycloplegic retinoscopic refraction, were then performed. AAPOS referral criteria for refractive error and strabismus were used.


There were 23 subjects examined. Four subjects (17%) were excluded from analysis due to poor photographic quality; 3 were gazing off axis and 1 had small pupils. Of the remaining 19 subjects, 7 were referred by clinical examination; 5 for astigmatism, 1 for myopia, and 1 for exotropia. The gocheckkids photoscreening app correctly referred 6/7 of these subjects (86% sensitivity). One subject with astigmatism was missed. Of the 6 subjects referred by both clinical and gocheckkids criteria, the diagnosis agreed in 5 of the 6, but in one case the clinical examination identified astigmatism while gocheckkids identified exotropia. There were no false positive referrals by gocheckkids (100% specificity).


Smartphone photoscreening could be an effective method of detecting risk factors for amblyopia. Diagnostic accuracy appeared adequate but better quality control is needed through training and automation. Automated quality analysis software is needed for real-time feedback to the operators, particularly with regard to patient fixation and pupil size.

Keywords: 417 amblyopia • 757 visual development: infancy and childhood • 723 strabismus: diagnosis and detection  

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