Introduction: The MTI photoscreener (MTI) and the Welch-Allyn SureSight autorefractor are commonly used for preschool vision screening. We compared both of these methods on 100 consecutive patients in a prospective, randomized, masked, clinical trial conducted at a tertiary care center.
Methods: One hundred patients between 1 and 6 years of age were included in the study. All participants underwent a comprehensive eye examination with cycloplegic refraction. Examination failure analysis was done on the SureSight data using the manufacturer's referral criteria, the Vision in Preschoolers study (VIP) 90% specificity criteria, the VIP 94% specificity criteria, and the referral criteria proposed by Rowatt and colleagues.
Results: Data were successfully obtained on 76% of children using the SureSight and 96% with the MTI. The sensitivity and specificity of the SureSight to detect clinically significant amblyogenic factors using the manufacturer's criteria was 96.6 and 38.1%, using the VIP 90% criteria was 79.3 and 64.3%, using the VIP 94% criteria was 67.2 and 69.0%, and using criteria proposed by Rowatt and colleagues was 62.1 and 73.8%. The sensitivity and specificity of the MTI photoscreener was 94.8 and 88.1%, respectively.
Conclusions: Using the manufacturer's referral criteria, the SureSight had a sensitivity equal to the MTI photoscreener; however, the specificity was low and over-referrals were anticipated. As specificity levels were increased, a substantial number of children with amblyogenic risk factors were not appropriately identified within our study population..