Prevalence of refractive error and the eye morbidity in school children in Bangalore, India


  • Kartik Ramachandra Department of Pediatrics, Rajarajeshwari medical college, Bangalore, Karnataka, India
  • Sahana Gilyaru Department of Pediatrics, Rajarajeshwari medical college, Bangalore, Karnataka, India
  • Adarsh Eregowda Department of Pediatrics, Rajarajeshwari medical college, Bangalore, Karnataka, India
  • Sreekrishna Yathiraja Department of Pediatrics, Rajarajeshwari medical college, Bangalore, Karnataka, India



Refractive error, School children, Eye morbidity


Background: Refractive errors have been listed, along with cataract, trachoma, onchocerciasis and childhood blindness, among eye problems whose prevention and cure should provide enormous savings and facilitate societal developments. The main objective is to find out the prevalence of refractive error and the eye morbidity in the school children.

Methods: One thousand students were selected from different schools in Bangalore, India. 20 schools were randomly selected from the list in the Bangalore, India during that period.  Fifty students from each school were then selected adopting simple random technique.

Results: A total of 1000 children from 20 schools were selected. However 940 were examined. The prevalence of refractive error was 10%. Mean age of the students was 9.49±2.5 years. Dominant ethnic group was Kannada speaking. Only 10.9% children were ever checked for their ophthalmic examination. Refractive error was associated with female sex but no association was found with class, age, ethnicity, parental education and other risk factors. About 1% students were color blind. Lack of association with increasing class may be due to poor educational training at Public sector schools.

Conclusions: An increased prevalence of refractive error was found in this study. There is a need of periodical eye examination, preferably while entering and leaving the school.  


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