A population-based study on the visual outcome in 10-year-old preterm and full-term children

Arch Ophthalmol. 2005 Jun;123(6):825-32. doi: 10.1001/archopht.123.6.825.


Objectives: To report the visual outcome in prematurely born and full-term children at the age of 10 years and to evaluate the effects of prematurity per se, retinopathy of prematurity (ROP), and cryotreatment on visual acuity.

Methods: The study included 216 prematurely born children and 217 children born at term from the same geographical area and study period. Best-corrected distance and near visual acuities were assessed with linear letter logarithm of the minimum angle of resolution charts. Crowding was evaluated.

Results: Prematurely born children had reduced distance and near visual acuities compared with full-term children, even when children who had retinopathy of prematurity and neurologic disorders were excluded (P<.001). Children who had been treated with cryotherapy had the highest risk of a reduced visual acuity. Two percent of the prematurely born children were visually impaired (<20/60).

Conclusions: Although we found an overall good visual outcome in the prematurely born cohort, the risk of reduced visual acuity was greater than in full-term children. Children who had been treated with cryotherapy had the highest risk, but prematurity per se was also associated with reduced visual acuity.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Cryotherapy
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Infant, Premature / physiology*
  • Male
  • Nystagmus, Pathologic / physiopathology
  • Retinopathy of Prematurity / physiopathology*
  • Retinopathy of Prematurity / therapy
  • Term Birth / physiology*
  • Vision Disorders / physiopathology*
  • Vision, Binocular / physiology
  • Visual Acuity / physiology*