May 2008
Volume 49, Issue 13
Free
ARVO Annual Meeting Abstract  |   May 2008
Evaluation of Visual Acuity and Myopia Prevalence in Greek and Bulgarian School Children
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • T. Giannakopoulou
    Institute of Vision & Optics (IVO), School of Health Sciences, University of Crete, Heraklion, Greece
  • S. Plainis
    Institute of Vision & Optics (IVO), School of Health Sciences, University of Crete, Heraklion, Greece
  • P. Nikolitsa
    Institute of Vision & Optics (IVO), School of Health Sciences, University of Crete, Heraklion, Greece
  • V. Tsapaki
    Dept of Ophthalmology, University Hospital, Heraklion, Crete, Greece
  • P. Tzatzala
    Institute of Vision & Optics (IVO), School of Health Sciences, University of Crete, Heraklion, Greece
  • I. G. Pallikaris
    Institute of Vision & Optics (IVO), School of Health Sciences, University of Crete, Heraklion, Greece
    Dept of Ophthalmology, University Hospital, Heraklion, Crete, Greece
  • J. Moschandrea
    Dept of Social Medicine, School of Health Sciences, University of Crete, Heraklion, Greece
  • M. K. Tsilimbaris
    Institute of Vision & Optics (IVO), School of Health Sciences, University of Crete, Heraklion, Greece
    Dept of Ophthalmology, University Hospital, Heraklion, Crete, Greece
  • Footnotes
    Commercial Relationships  T. Giannakopoulou, None; S. Plainis, None; P. Nikolitsa, None; V. Tsapaki, None; P. Tzatzala, None; I.G. Pallikaris, None; J. Moschandrea, None; M.K. Tsilimbaris, None.
  • Footnotes
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Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science May 2008, Vol.49, 3140. doi:https://doi.org/
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      T. Giannakopoulou, S. Plainis, P. Nikolitsa, V. Tsapaki, P. Tzatzala, I. G. Pallikaris, J. Moschandrea, M. K. Tsilimbaris; Evaluation of Visual Acuity and Myopia Prevalence in Greek and Bulgarian School Children. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2008;49(13):3140. doi: https://doi.org/.

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

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Abstract

Purpose: : To assess visual acuity (VA) using the habitual refractive correction and estimate the prevalence of refractive error in primary and secondary school children in a Greek and Bulgaria.

Methods: : A cohort of 926 children, aged 10 to 15 years, from four randomly-selected schools in a Greek (Heraklion) and a Bulgarian (Stara Zagora) city of similar population size (~180.000) was examined. 616 were Greek (age 12.7±1.5 yrs) and 310 Bulgarian (age: 12.5±1.4 yrs), while 453 were in primary (age: 11.4± 0.6 yrs) and 477 in secondary education (age: 13.9±0.7 yrs). VA was assessed with the habitual refractive correction, using the UoC European-wide logMAR charts (Plainis et al., 2007). Sphero-cylidrical refractive error was measured using an auto-refractometer (Potec RK, Essilor).

Results: : Analysis showed that 23.9% of Greek vs. 8.7% of Bulgarian children wore spectacles at school. The percentage of children with minimal visual impairment (decimal VA < 0.8) in at least one eye was 31.7% (95% CI 28.0%-35.3%) for Greek compared to 21.9% (95% CI 17.3%-26.5%) for Bulgarian children. When the impairment criterion was set to VA < 0.5 (mild impairment), the corresponding values were 11.4% (95% CI 8.9%-13.9%) for Greek and 4.8% (95% CI 2.5%-7.2%) for Bulgarian students. However, while 52.8% of Greek children with VA 0.75 D and decimal VA < 0.8. Myopia prevalence was also found to differ between primary (24.6%) and secondary (36.5%) school children in each country.

Conclusions: : A significant number of children in both countries attend school lessons with minimal VA impairment. The increased values of myopia prevalence in Greek compared to Bulgarian school children may arise from socio-economic differences. The difference in myopia prevalence in the two age groups highlights the rapid progress of myopia in school ages.

Keywords: visual acuity • clinical (human) or epidemiologic studies: prevalence/incidence • myopia 
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