Purpose: To evaluate the prevalence of astigmatism in infancy and childhood in a Spanish population.
Methods: A total of 478 children with astigmatism from Valencia Province, Spain were examined. The patients, ranging in age from 2-12 years, were classified into groups according to age. Astigmatism error and axis orientation were determined using noncyclopegic retinoscopy over each eye.
Results: The overall prevalence of astigmatism (> or = 1.00 diopter of cylinder) decreased in relation to increasing age from 44.3% to 5.2%. The prevalence of against-the-rule astigmatism decreased from 61.5% (at 2 years) to 33.4% (at 12 years), with-the-rule astigmatism increased in prevalence from 23.1% (at 2 years) to 66.6% (at 12 years), and oblique astigmatism decreased with age from 15.4% (at 2 years) and 0% (at 12 years).
Conclusion: These results do not vary from those observed in other populations. Factors such as race, nutrition, and environmental condition did not vary from the literature regarding the prevalence of astigmatism in infants and children.