Purpose: 1045 children between 12 and 13 years old were examined in a field study in the Göteborg area (Sweden). The aim of this study was to report the prevalence of refractive errors, with special attention to myopia, since there are no previous reports in Sweden about this age group.
Methods: The examination included visual acuity testing and refraction under cycloplegia.
Results: We found a prevalence of myopia (> or = -0.5D) of 49.7% and a prevalence of bilateral myopia of 39%. In the whole population, 23.3% were considered to need glasses (> or = -0.75D). We also found a prevalence of high myopia (> or = -5D) in 2.5% of the children.
Discussion: No statistically significant difference in myopia with respect to gender was found. The proportion of children needing glasses is considered the best indicator of the prevalence of myopia in this sample. The results confirm that this tendency towards myopisation in a teenage population in Göteborg is similar to the prevalence found in other parts of the world.