The Prevalence of Myopia in School-Age Children in Slovakia and the Covid-19 Pandemic
The prevalence of pediatric myopia in Slovakia is not known and to date, no data has been published relating to the incidence of myopia in this country. This study conducted in a village in Slovakia aimed to determine the prevalence of myopia and premyopia in school children before and after the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic. The study included 47 children aged 7-12 years who underwent eye examinations in 2019 and 2022. The results showed a significant decrease in mean spherical equivalent and an increase in axial length of the eyes between the two years. The prevalence of myopia and premyopia increased from 4.3% to 8.5% and 31.9% to 48.9%, respectively. The study suggests that the lifestyle changes during the pandemic, including increased screen time and reduced outdoor activities, may have contributed to these changes. Further research is needed to understand the long-term implications of these findings and to develop strategies for myopia prevention in children.