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Rates of Eye Conditions Differ Among Minority Preschoolers

Rates of myopia, hyperopia vary among young African-American, Hispanic children

FRIDAY, Jan. 8 (HealthDay News) -- In African-American and Hispanic children aged 6 to 72 months, rates of various eye conditions differ, according to two studies published in the January issue of Ophthalmology.

In one study, Rohit Varma, M.D., of the Doheny Eye Institute in Los Angeles, and colleagues from the Multi-Ethnic Pediatric Eye Disease Study Group evaluated 2,994 African-American and 3,030 Hispanic children. They found that myopia was more prevalent in African-Americans (6.6 versus 3.7 percent) and that hyperopia was more prevalent in Hispanics (26.9 versus 20.8 percent).

In a second study, Mark Borchert, M.D., of the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, and colleagues studied the same groups of children and found that the prevalence of spherical and cylindrical anisometropia of at least one diopter ranged from about 4 to 6 percent, and that the prevalence of cylindrical or spherical equivalent anisometropia of at least three diopters was less than 0.4 percent.

"Further studies need to assess longitudinal changes in anisometropia and the levels of anisometropia that confer significant amblyopia risk before cost-effective screening regimens can be developed," Borchert and colleagues conclude.

Abstract - Varma
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Abstract - Borchert
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