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D. Lee, Y. Pang, R. Patel, M. Patel; A Study of Myopia Progression in Young Adults. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2008;49(13):2608.
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To determine if myopia progresses among young adult optometry students school whose professional education requires extensive near work.
Seven hundred forty optometry students attending the Illinois College of Optometry were recruited for the study. Their medical records were reviewed. Only the students who had at least two comprehensive eye exams which were spaced at least 12 months apart during the 4-year optometric education were included, resulting in 416 subjects. Subjects with ocular pathology or best corrected visual acuity (VA) worse than 20/30 were excluded from the study. The following information was collected: date of exam, date of birth, gender, race, best corrected VA, phoric posture, and refraction from the binocular balance. Myopia is defined by using the spherical equivalence of the refractive error being equal or higher than -0.75 D. Only the refraction in the right eye was used to measure the myopia progression. A paired student t-test was used to compare the refraction from the first eye exam with that from the second one. ANOVA was performed to compare myopia progression in different races. Effects of gender and phoric posture on myopia progression were tested by student t-test.
A total of 340 out of 416 subjects had myopia in the right eye equal or higher than -0.75 D with a mean of -4.14 ± -2.35 D (mean ± SD). The mean change of myopia over an average period of 1.73-year was -0.19D, with statistically significant differences detected between the refraction of the first exam and that of the second exam (P< 0.001). Myopia progression was -0.23 D in the subjects with exophoria compared to -0.04 D in those with esophoria. The difference was statistically significant (P=0.03). No difference in myopia progression was detested between difference races and genders.
There was a statistically significant progression of myopia in these young adults during their optometric education; however, the myopia progression may be too small to be considered clinically significance.
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