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Ophthalmic Epidemiol. 2001 Sep;8(4):227-36.

Familial clustering and myopia progression in Singapore school children.

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Department of Community, Occupational and Family Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, National University of Singapore, Singapore.



Familial factors may be related to the progression of myopia in children. A cohort study was conducted to determine the relationship between familial factors and myopia progression in children.


From a larger clinical trial (n = 311), 153 Singapore children aged 6--12 years were recruited to participate in a cohort study of the risk factors for myopia progression. An in-person interview was conducted whereby information on the history of myopia in first-degree relatives was obtained. Other information collected included housing type, parental education and income. Cycloplegic refractive error as measured by subjective refraction and autorefraction were ascertained every six months. The average length of follow-up was 28 months.


The adjusted mean rate of progression of myopia was -0.60 (95% confidence interval -0.66, -0.55) diopters per year. The average rate of progression of myopia for children with a parental history of myopia was -0.63 (95% confidence interval -0.69, -0.56) diopters per year compared to -0.42 (95% confidence interval -0.57, -0.27) diopters per year for children whose parents were not myopic. The different measures of family history of myopia were related to rate of change in refractive error and refractive error in the final visit. There was no association between close work and myopia progression.


A positive family history is related to the progression of myopia and final refractive error in Singapore children, thus supporting evidence that hereditary factors may play an important role in myopia progression.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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