Purpose: To investigate the prevalence and clinical features of ocular abnormalities in patients with cerebral palsy (CP) and the association with gross motor function.
Methods: A complete ophthalmologic examination was performed in 88 consecutive patients with CP before and during orthopedic surgery in a tertiary hospital from July 2008 to March 2010. The prevalence and clinical features of ocular abnormalities and the association with gross motor function state were investigated.
Results: Seventy-eight patients (89%) had ocular abnormalities. Refractive errors were found in 53 patients (60%). Strabismus including exotropia (50%), esotropia (9%), and hypertropia (9.1%) was found in 52 patients (59%). Posterior segment abnormalities were found in 19 patients (22%), cornea and lens abnormalities in 8 patients (9%), and epiblepharon in 5 patients (6%). Among 57 patients whose visual acuity could be measured, best-corrected visual acuity of the better eye was ≤ 20/40 in 18 patients (32%) and ≤ 20/200 in 3 patients (5%). Objective vision-impairing ocular abnormalities and vertical strabismus were significantly associated with poor gross motor function before orthopedic surgery.
Conclusions: Ocular abnormalities were present in the majority of CP patients and patients with poor gross motor function were more likely to be afflicted with vision-impairing ocular abnormalities. Ophthalmologic evaluation is deemed necessary in CP patients, especially in those with poor motor function.