Purpose: To compare patient preferences for eyeglasses prescribed using a low-cost, portable wavefront autorefractor versus standard subjective refraction (SR).
Design: Randomized, cross-over clinical trial.
Participants: Patients aged 18 to 40 years presenting with refractive errors (REs) to a tertiary eye hospital in Southern India.
Methods: Participants underwent SR followed by autorefraction (AR) using the monocular version of the QuickSee device (PlenOptika Inc). An independent optician, masked to the refraction approach, prepared eyeglasses based on each refraction approach. Participants (masked to refraction source) were randomly assigned to use SR- or AR-based eyeglasses first, followed by the other pair, for 1 week each. At the end of each week, participants had their vision checked and were interviewed about their experience with the eyeglasses.
Main outcome measures: Patients preferring eyeglasses were chosen using AR and SR.
Results: The 400 participants enrolled between March 26, 2018, and August 2, 2019, had a mean (standard deviation) age of 28.4 (6.6) years, and 68.8% were women. There was a strong correlation between spherical equivalents using SR and AR (r = 0.97, P < 0.001) with a mean difference of -0.07 diopters (D) (95% limits of agreement [LoA], -0.68 to 0.83). Of the 301 patients (75.2%) who completed both follow-up visits, 50.5% (n = 152) and 49.5% (n = 149) preferred glasses prescribed using SR and AR, respectively (95% CI, 45.7-56.3; P = 0.86). There were no differences in demographic or vision characteristics between participants with different preferences (P > 0.05 for all).
Conclusions: We observed a strong agreement between the prescriptions from SR and AR, and eyeglasses prescribed using SR and AR were equally preferred by patients. Wider use of prescribing based on AR alone in resource-limited settings is supported by these findings.
Keywords: Eyeglasses; Low-cost portable wavefront autorefractor; Randomized controlled trial; Refraction.
Copyright © 2021 American Academy of Ophthalmology. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.