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J Optom. 2014 Jul-Sep;7(3):153-60. doi: 10.1016/j.optom.2013.08.003. Epub 2013 Sep 20.

Prevalence of asymptomatic ocular conditions in subjects with refractive-based symptoms.

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École d'optométrie de l'Université de Montréal, Canada. Electronic address:
École d'optométrie de l'Université de Montréal, Canada.



This study aims to determine the overall prevalence of ocular conditions in a population from 19 to 64 years old, presenting with refractive-based symptoms only. Results could impact clinical standard of eye care on a similar population.


This is a retrospective study on patients seen for an eye examination at the Clinique Universitaire de la Vision (CUV), between January 2007 and 2009. Files of individuals who presented with refractive symptoms were only selected and classified by file number. Then, every third file from the beginning was kept and reviewed by a reader. A second reader did the same with every third file from the end. Both readers were trained to use the same analysis grid to classify the diagnosed ocular conditions. In the case of multiple findings, the most severe condition was considered. The overall prevalence of ocular conditions was determined by calculating their occurrence divided by the number of files analyzed.


A total of 860 charts were analyzed. In 26.1% of the cases an ocular condition was diagnosed. This work establishes a higher prevalence of ocular conditions compared to another study conducted in Canada in the past. This difference can be explained by a different analytical methodology and by the fact that all examinations, in this study, were made under pupillary dilation.


The presence of ocular conditions in 26% of asymptomatic patients supports the need to assess ocular health under pupil dilation as part of any eye examination. However, further cost-to-benefit analysis is required before establishing such a recommendation.


Asymptomatic patients; Enfermedades de la retina; Ocular health screening; Ocular pathology; Pacientes asintomáticos; Patología ocular; Refracción; Refraction; Retinal diseases; Supervisión de la salud ocular

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