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Sarah R Hatt, David A Leske, Laura Liebermann, Jonathan M Holmes; Symptoms in Children with Intermittent Exotropia. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2015;56(7 ):5210. doi: https://doi.org/.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
Children with intermittent exotropia (XT) may experience symptoms related to their eye condition. Nevertheless, the frequency and type of symptoms have not been rigorously studied. The aim of this study was to identify the types of symptoms experienced by children with intermittent XT and to report their frequency.
24 children (aged 5 to 17 years) with intermittent XT underwent individual semi-structured interviews to elicit concerns related to their eyes. Interview transcripts were reviewed and specific symptoms identified. Based on the interview transcripts, 22 specific symptom questions were formulated and compiled as a symptoms questionnaire. Symptom questionnaires were then administered to a separate cohort of 35 children (aged 5-13 years) with intermittent XT, who had not undergone previous surgery. Response options were: “not at all”, “sometimes” or “a lot” (5-to 7-year olds) or “never”, ‘almost never”, “sometimes”, “often” or “almost always” (8- to 17-year olds). For analysis purposes, responses of “not at all”, “never” or “almost never” were considered consistent with not having the symptom. The overall frequency of symptoms was then calculated.
The mean number of specific symptoms reported by each child was 7 (range 2 to 19). The most frequently reported symptom was rubbing the eyes (29 [83%] of 35), followed by problems with eyes in the sun (22, 63%), the eyes feeling tired (22, 63%), having to shut one eye (17, 49%), awareness of panoramic vision (17, 49%) and having to blink to control the eyes (15, 43%).
Children with intermittent XT frequently report symptoms such as having to rub their eyes and having problems with their eyes in the sun. Results from this study could be used to develop a shorter symptom survey for children with intermittent XT. Formal assessment of symptoms may be important for understanding how intermittent XT affects children and for optimizing management.
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