Myopia, the most common refractive error, has a prevalence of 10-30% in Western countries, but as high as 80% in Asia

Myopia (nearsightedness), the most common form of refractive error, has a prevalence of about 10-30% in most Western countries, but this figure is as high as 80% in parts of Asia. Furthermore, myopic refractive error is likely to progress during school years, and maintaining appropriate spectacle correction requires regular services for children in these age groups.

A study of self correction of refractive error among young people in rural China showed that although visual acuity was slightly worse with self refraction than automated or subjective refraction, acuity was excellent in nearly all these young people with inadequately corrected refractive error at baseline. Inaccurate power was less common with self refraction than automated refraction.

Self refraction could decrease the requirement for scarce trained personnel, expensive devices, and cycloplegia in children’s vision programs in rural China.


Correcting refractive error in low income countries. BMJ 2011; 343 doi: 10.1136/bmj.d4793 (Published 9 August 2011).

20-20-20 rule: For every 20 minutes of reading a screen take a 20-second eye break, look at something beyond 20 feet. NYTimes, 2012.

Nearsighted kids may get worse in winter -- Myopia progression seem to decrease in periods with longer days and to increase in periods with shorter days. Children should be encouraged to spend more time outside during daytime to prevent myopia (study)

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