Relationships between ophthalmological and neuropaediatric findings in children adopted from Eastern Europe

Acta Ophthalmol. 2010 Mar;88(2):227-34. doi: 10.1111/j.1755-3768.2008.01430.x. Epub 2009 Mar 13.


Purpose: This study aimed to evaluate and relate visual function, ocular dimensions and neuropaediatric findings in adoptees from Eastern Europe.

Methods: We studied 72 of 99 children, born during 1990-95 and adopted from Eastern Europe to western Sweden during 1993-97. The children (mean age 7.5 years, range 4.8-10.5 years; 41 boys, 31 girls) were examined after a mean period of 5 years post-adoption by a multidisciplinary team. Correlations between ophthalmological findings and neuropaediatric data were analysed.

Results: Bivariate and regression analyses indicate a significant positive correlation between visual acuity (VA) and perceptual organization (p < 0.001), as well as between strabismus and verbal comprehension (p < 0.02). Fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) was correlated with low VA (p < 0.02), subnormal stereovision (p < 0.009) and small optic discs (p < 0.02). Small head circumference was related to low VA (p < 0.015) and small optic discs (p < 0.03). Furthermore, small optic discs were related to low birthweight (p < 0.005) and preterm birth (p < 0.01). Large optic cups were correlated with poorer perceptual organization (p < 0.02).

Conclusions: In this group of adoptees from Eastern Europe, ophthalmological findings were correlated to neuropaediatric findings, especially those arising from prenatal adverse events resulting in growth deficiency and central nervous system damage. Therefore, it is important and valuable with an ophthalmological examination in children adopted from Eastern Europe.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adoption*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Europe, Eastern / ethnology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Nervous System Diseases / ethnology*
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Prospective Studies
  • Refractive Errors / ethnology*
  • Speech Disorders / ethnology
  • Strabismus / ethnology*
  • Sweden / epidemiology
  • Vision Disorders / ethnology*
  • Vision Tests
  • Visual Acuity