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title:Paediatric low vision: magnitude, interventions, determinants and compliance

Author:Rahul Deshpande, Anita Bhargava, Khurshed Bharucha, Kuldeep Dole, Col Madan Deshpande, Rajiv Khandekar

Keywords:Low vision, Screening, Vision 2020

Type:Original Article

Abstract:Aim: To assess the low vision problem and its management along with impact assessment in paediatric population (children aged 0-16 years from blind schools and paediatric patients visiting the low vision department of a tertiary eye care centre). Materials and Methods: In this cross-sectional study in which out of the total 3463 children from both the groups, 314 from blind schools and the 3149 from tertiary eye care centre in Pune a total of 113 children with low vision were assessed between October 1st 2007 and October 1st 2008. A complete low vision examination was done and appropriate aids were provided. Two follow up examinations were done at 3 and 9 months. Demographic information and entire assessment was done as per the modified WHO/PBL form for blind with low vision assessment and a questionnaire to assess the compliance. Results: Out of 314 children from the schools for blind, 19.10%(60 number) were found to have low vision, majority having globe anomaly as the determinant and out of 3149 in the tertiary eye care centre 1.68% (53) were found to have low vision, majority with retinal lesions. All the children with vision <6/60 showed significant improvement in vision. In schools for blind, out of 52 who had vision <6/24, 35 (58.33%) improved to >6/24 range. In tertiary eye care centre, out of 49 who had vision <6/24, 24 (45.28%) improved to >6/24 range. After correction 61.7% in blind schools and 67.9% in the tertiary eye care centre had their near vision improved to the range of 1.5M – 1M. Conclusions: Good screening, assessment and early management of low vision in children is important so as to help them become independent citizens and reduce the load of visual impairment.

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