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Refractive errors in students from Middle Eastern backgrounds living and undertaking schooling in Australia

Azizoglu, Serap, Junghans, Barbara M., Barutchu, Ayla and Crewther, Sheila G. 2011, Refractive errors in students from Middle Eastern backgrounds living and undertaking schooling in Australia, Clinical and experimental optometry, vol. 94, no. 1, pp. 67-75, doi: 10.1111/j.1444-0938.2010.00563.x.

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Title Refractive errors in students from Middle Eastern backgrounds living and undertaking schooling in Australia
Author(s) Azizoglu, SerapORCID iD for Azizoglu, Serap orcid.org/0000-0003-3420-4098
Junghans, Barbara M.
Barutchu, Ayla
Crewther, Sheila G.
Journal name Clinical and experimental optometry
Volume number 94
Issue number 1
Start page 67
End page 75
Total pages 9
Publisher Wiley
Place of publication Oxford, Eng.
Publication date 2011-01
ISSN 1444-0938
Keyword(s) refractive errors
ethnology
adolescent
age
epidemology
prevalence
refractive errors
urban population
visual acuity
Summary Background:  Environmental factors associated with schooling systems in various countries have been implicated in the rising prevalence of myopia, making the comparison of prevalence of refractive errors in migrant populations of interest. This study aims to determine the prevalence of refractive errors in children of Middle Eastern descent, raised and living in urban Australia but actively maintaining strong ties to their ethnic culture, and to compare them with those in the Middle East where myopia prevalence is generally low.Methods:  A total of 354 out of a possible 384 late primary/early secondary schoolchildren attending a private school attracting children of Middle Eastern background in Melbourne were assessed for refractive error and visual acuity. A Shin Nippon open-field NVision-K5001 autorefractor was used to carry out non-cycloplegic autorefraction while viewing a distant target. For statistical analyses students were divided into three age groups: 10–11 years (n = 93); 12–13 years (n = 158); and 14–15 years (n = 102).Results:  All children were bilingual and classified as of Middle Eastern (96.3 per cent) or Egyptian (3.7 per cent) origin. Ages ranged from 10 to 15 years, with a mean of 13.17 ± 0.8 (SEM) years. Mean spherical equivalent refraction (SER) for the right eye was +0.09 ± 0.07 D (SEM) with a range from -7.77 D to +5.85 D. The prevalence of myopia, defined as a spherical equivalent refraction 0.50 D or more of myopia, was 14.7 per cent. The prevalence of hyperopia, defined as a spherical equivalent refraction of +0.75 D or greater, was 16.4 per cent, while hyperopia of +1.50 D or greater was 5.4 per cent. A significant difference in SER was seen as a function of age; however, no significant gender difference was seen.Conclusions:  This is the first study to report the prevalence of refractive errors for second-generation Australian schoolchildren coming from a predominantly Lebanese Middle Eastern Arabic background, who endeavour to maintain their ethnic ties. The relatively low prevalence of myopia is similar to that found for other metropolitan Australian school children but higher than that reported in the Middle East. These results suggest that lifestyle and educational practices may be a significant influence in the progression of myopic refractive errors.
Language eng
DOI 10.1111/j.1444-0938.2010.00563.x
Field of Research 119999 Medical and Health Sciences not elsewhere classified
Socio Economic Objective 970111 Expanding Knowledge in the Medical and Health Sciences
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2011, Wiley
Free to Read? Yes
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30064414

Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Faculty of Health
School of Medicine
Open Access Collection
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Every reasonable effort has been made to ensure that permission has been obtained for items included in DRO. If you believe that your rights have been infringed by this repository, please contact drosupport@deakin.edu.au.