Refractive Error Study in Children: Results from Mechi Zone, Nepal

  • The purpose of this study was to assess the prevalence of refractive error and vision impairment in school age children in the terai area of the Mechi zone in Eastern Nepal.

  • A sample of 5526 aged 5 to 15 years children were randomly selected from 3724 households.

  • The prevalence of uncorrected, presenting, and best visual acuity 0.5 (20/40) or worse in at least one eye was 2.9%, 2.8%, and 1.4%, respectively.

  • Refractive error was the cause in 56% of the 200 eyes with reduced uncorrected vision, amblyopia in 9%.

  • Myopia −0.5 diopter or less in either eye or hyperopia 2 diopters or greater was observed in less than 3% of children.

  • Hyperopia risk was associated with female gender and myopia risk with older age.

  • The prevalence of reduced vision is very low in school-age children in Nepal, most of it because of correctable refractive error.

This article was identified as a reference for a VII-commissioned systematic review on the Impact of URE on Children.

Publication date

December 7, 2016


American Journal of Ophthalmology


Pokharel, G.P., Negrel, A.D., Munoz, S.R. and Ellwein, L.B.
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