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Carly S Y Lam, Wing Chun Tang; Impact of adoption of e-learning with portable electronic devices on myopia development and progression in primary schoolchildren. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2018;59(9):3400.
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Portable electronic devices have been introduced for classroom teaching and learning and homework. The aim of this study was to compare the refractive error and axial length changes in schoolchildren who adopted the use of iPads for studying and schoolchildren who used conventional textbooks over two years.
Chinese children were recruited from two local Hong Kong primary schools where the school introduced iPad to replace conventional textbooks for teaching and learning in some of the classes while the remaining classes continued to use the conventional textbooks. The study commenced at the start of an academic year and follow up for 2 years. Human ethic approval were obtained and consent from both parents and child were obtained prior to data collection. 106 primary 2 (7 years old) and 95 primary 4 (9 years old) students participated in this study. The e-book group included students in the classes using iPads whereas the textbook group included students in classes using textbooks. Cycloplegic refraction and axial length were measured by an open-field autorefractor and IOL Master at 6-month intervals for 2 years. Only the data of the right eye were used for data analysis. The changes in refractive error and axial length between two groups of subjects were compared by using unpaired t-tests.
154 children completed the 2-year study, n = 69 in the e-book group and n = 85 in the textbook group. 17% children developed myopia (spherical equivalent < -0.50D) in the e-book group over 2 years and 18% of children in the text book group. The proportion of myopia increased from 28 % to 45% over 2 years and from 27% to 45% in the e-book group and the textbook respectively. The mean changes in refractive error were -0.64 ± 0.72D and -0.72± 0.94D in the e-book group and the textbook group. The mean changes in axial length were 0.49 ± 0.29mm and 0.56 ± 0.38mm in the e-book and the textbook groups. There were no statistically significant differences of refractive error changes (mean difference = 0.08 ± 0.14D; unpaired t-test, p = 0.57) and axial length changes (mean difference = 0.07± 0.06 mm; unpaired t-test, p = 0.20) between the two groups.
This study did not show evidence that integrating portable electronic devices is associated with myopia development and progression among primary school children.
This is an abstract that was submitted for the 2018 ARVO Annual Meeting, held in Honolulu, Hawaii, April 29 - May 3, 2018.
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