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Vol. 24 - Num. 95

Original Papers

Prevalence and sociodemographic factors associated with amblyopia in preschool population

Julia Torrecillas Peraltaa, David Prieto Merinob, Jerónimo Lajara Blesac, Jorge L. Alió Sanzd, Jorge L. Alió del Barriod

aPrograma de Doctorado en Ciencias de la Salud. Universidad Católica San Antonio. Murcia. España.
bMétodos Estadísticos Aplicados en Investigación Médica. Universidad Católica San Antonio. Murcia. España. Facultad de Epidemiología y Salud de la Población. London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Londres. Reino Unido .
cFacultad de Ciencias de la Salud. Universidad Católica San Antonio. Murcia. España.
dUnidad de Córnea, Catarata y Cirugía Refractiva. Vissum Miranza. Departamento de Oftalmología. Facultad de Medicina. Universidad Miguel Hernández. Alicante. España.

Correspondence: JL Alió. E-mail: jorge_alio@hotmail.com

Reference of this article: Torrecillas Peralta J, Prieto Merino D, Lajara Blesa J, Alió Sanz JL, Alió del Barrio JL. Prevalence and sociodemographic factors associated with amblyopia in preschool population . Rev Pediatr Aten Primaria. 2022;24:e291-e299.

Published in Internet: 20-09-2022 - Visits: 893

Abstract

Objective: to estimate the prevalence of amblyopia and its treatment in preschool children in the province of Alicante over a long period, as well as the influence of different sociodemographic factors.

Methods: cross-sectional descriptive observational study (2002-2015) using a validated amblyopia detection protocol [sensitivity 89. 3%; specificity 93.1%] in schoolchildren aged 4 to 6 years. The main variable was the classification of the 140,102 children examined according to test results ("normal", "suspected pathology" or in "previous treatment") and the explanatory variables: age, sex, school year, type of school management and location.

Results: the prevalence of children “suspected” of amblyopia varied significantly, between school years, from 8.54% to 23.9% (p=0.00000). Six-year-old children had significantly higher values of suspected amblyopia (16.68%; p=0.00000) and children enrolled in private schools the lowest (8.05%; p=0.00000). The probability that a “non-normal” child was already treated increased with age (OR 2.06; p<0.001) and with attendance at a private school (OR=1.56; p=0.001).

Conclusions: the prevalence of suspected amblyopia was high in the study area, with older children and children belonging to the lowest socioeconomic group being at higher risk. School screening programs for the early detection of amblyopia are recommended to increase and equalize the likelihood of access to treatment, thereby reducing the prevalence and severity of amblyopia in children.

Keywords

Amblyopia Primary Care Visual acuity Visual impairment

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