Ereifej, Ismat
March 2012
Middle East Journal of Nursing;Mar2012, Vol. 6 Issue 2, p15
Academic Journal
Objectives: To study the causes of poor vision among school children in Jordan as an example of developing countries and to see whether it is useful to conduct a regular visual screening program in school children. Materials and Methods: A prospective study that was done in Queen Alia Military Hospital during the period between July 2009 and July 2011. A total number of 1046 children aged between 6-14 years were enrolled in the study. Two sampling methods were used. Firstly, randomly selected patients attending the pediatric clinic for non ophthalmologic complaints were referred to the ophthalmology clinic. And secondly, children from two different schools were screened by an ophthalmologist for their visual acuity using illiterate E-chart and a pinhole. Patients with suspected eye abnormalities or with visual acuity <6/12 in at least one eye underwent further ocular examination including anterior and posterior segment examination and cycloplegic refraction. Results: 982 children (93.9%) had visual acuity of 6/12 or better in both eyes. 64 children (6.1%) had visual acuity of <6/12 in at least one eye (52 were bilateral and 12 were unilateral). Myopia (simple or compound) was found in 42 children (4.0%), hypermetropia in 4 children (0.4%), and astigmatism in 2 children (0.2%). Other causes of poor vision included congenital cataract, corneal pathology, retinal abnormalities, congenital glaucoma, and strabismic amblyopia. Conclusion: The prevalence of refractive errors is high enough to justify a regular school visual acuity screening program as it may affect children's educational development.


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