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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2020  |  Volume : 8  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 56-61

Comparison of refractive error and related ocular morbidities between Saudi and Indian school children in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia


Research Department, King Khaled Eye Specialist Hospital, Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Ziaul Haq Yasir
Research Department, King Khaled Eye Specialist Hospital, 2775 Alurubah Road, Umm Alhamam Algharbi, Riyadh 12329-8139
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/jcor.jcor_6_19

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Purpose: In children, refractive error (RE), especially myopia, is influenced by both genetic and environmental factors. We compared the magnitude and determinants of RE among Saudi and Indian students in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Methods: This study was conducted in 2017–2018 and evaluated students in preparatory and secondary grades. A “Spot Screener” was used to determine if the child passed or failed a refraction test. Data on vision, RE, anisometropia, and strabismus were compared between Indian and Saudi students. P < 0.05 was considered statistically significant. Results: The study sample was comprised of 770 Indian and 708 Saudi students. There were more Indian students (35.3%) with moderate visual impairment (<20/60–20/200) than Saudi students (6.1%) (odds ratio [OR] =8.4). The prevalence of RE in Indian and Saudi students was 50.1% and 43.6%, respectively. There were 45.6% Indian and 35.9% Saudi students with myopia (P < 0.001). The prevalence of hyperopia in Indian and Saudi students was 4.5% and 7.8%, respectively (P < 0.001). The prevalence of strabismus was significantly higher in Indian students (11%) compared to Saudi students (4.1%) (P < 0.001). The rate of anisometropia was higher in Indian than Saudi students (P = 0.001). A family history of RE was significantly lower in Indian students compared to Saudi students (OR = 0.7). Spectacle compliance was similar between Indian (78.9%) and Saudi (74.8%) students. Conclusions: Preparatory and secondary students of Indian and Saudi nationalities sharing the same environment had different rates and types of RE. Integrating RE services within the school healthcare system is required in both Indian and Saudi schools in Riyadh.


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