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Factors Associated with Refractive Errors among Schoolchildren in Rural Field Practice Area of a Tertiary Care Hospital, Bangalore

Author:Usha S, Vidusha S S Karavadi, Damayanthi M N

Keywords:Refractive Errors, School children, Myopia, Family history

Type:Original Article

Abstract:"Background: 285 million people are visually impaired worldwide. An estimated 19 million children are visually impaired, and 12million are visually impaired due to Refractive Errors. Children in school going age group fall in preventable age group for correction of Refractive Errors. The study was conducted to determine the factors associated with refractive errors among schoolchildren in rural field practice area of Rajarajeswari Medical College and Hospital, Bangalore. Methodology: A cross sectional study conducted among school children in age group of 7-15yrs.School children of age 7-15 yrs were examined for defective vision using Snellen’s chart. General information of the children was collected using a pre-designed and semi- structured questionnaire Children with abnormal vision were referred to hospital. Results: 1140 study participants were examined where the mean age was 11.28years.The prevalence of Refractive Errors was 10.5%.The prevalence of Refractive Errors was significantly associated with age(p<0.05).The association between family history and Refractive Errors was statistically significant with p <0.001. Conclusion: The Prevalence of Refractive Errors, especially myo-pia, was higher in older children. Causes of higher prevalence and barriers to Refractive Error correction services and compliance should be identified and addressed. Eye screening of school children is recommended.