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Jeniffer S. Kim, Ge Wen, Kristina Tarczy-Hornoch, Roberta McKean-Cowdin, Mark Borchert, Susan Cotter, Mina Torres, Rohit Varma, Multi-Ethnic Pediatric Eye Disease Study Group; Racial/Ethnic Differences in Axial Length in Preschool Children: Multi-Ethnic Pediatric Eye Disease Study (MEPEDS). Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2011;52(14):6329.
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To investigate differences in axial length in a population based multi-ethnic sample of preschool children.
The Multi-Ethnic Pediatric Eye Disease Study (MEPEDS) is a population based cohort that evaluates the prevalence of vision disorders in children aged 6-72 months in Los Angeles County, California. Axial length was measured using an IOL master in children older than 24 months. The data was analyzed using a linear regression model that explores the association between axial length and racial/ethnic groups, after adjusting for age and gender.
A sample of 5161 (82.6%) children with complete data was analyzed from the total sample of 6245 children. Of the 5161 children, there were 530 (10.3%) Asian, 1825 (35.4%) African American, 1871 (36.3%) Hispanic, and 935 (18.1%) non-Hispanic White children. The mean axial length in Asian, African American, Hispanic, and non-Hispanic White children were 21.74mm, 21.64mm, 21.70mm, and 21.57mm, respectively. Asian children were found to have statistically significant longer axial lengths than their African American and non-Hispanic White counterparts. Hispanic children were also found to have longer axial lengths than non-Hispanic White children.
MEPEDS is the first population based study to investigate racial/ethnic differences in axial length in preschool aged children. Significant differences in axial length are present in preschool children. These differences in axial length provide one explanation for the differences in refractive error noted in preschool children in the four racial/ethnic groups.
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