Objective: To study the prevalence of undercorrected refractive error and associated sociodemographic factors among Singaporean Chinese adults.
Design: Cross-sectional, population-based survey.
Participants: Singaporean Chinese adults aged 40 to 79 years (n = 1152).
Methods: The Singapore electoral register of Tanjong Pagar was used as a sampling frame, and disproportionate, stratified, clustered, random sampling was performed. There were 1717 eligible adults and 1232 (71.8%) participated. Analysis was performed among 1152 adults with complete habitual and best-corrected visual acuity data.
Main outcome measure: Undercorrected refractive error was defined as improvement of better eye visual acuity of at least 2 lines or more with best possible refractive correction.
Results: The age- and gender-adjusted rate of undercorrected refractive error standardized directly by age and gender was 17.3% (95% confidence interval, 15.0, 19.5). Undercorrected refractive error rates were more common in older adults who had completed fewer years of education and in those who had cataract. People who did not wear spectacles tended to have poorer vision.
Conclusions: The undercorrected refractive error rate among Singaporean Chinese is relatively common compared with data from other populations.