Effects of atropine and tropicamide on ocular biological parameters in children: a prospective observational study

BMC Ophthalmol. 2023 Mar 13;23(1):96. doi: 10.1186/s12886-023-02840-5.


Background: The effectiveness of cycloplegia in delaying the progression of myopia and its application in refractive examination in children have been extensively studied, but there are still few studies on the effects of atropine/tropicamide on ocular biological parameters. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to explore the effects of atropine/tropicamide on children's ocular biological parameters in different age groups and the differences between them.

Methods: This was a prospective observational study in which all school children were examined for dioptres and ocular biological parameters in the outpatient clinic, and 1% atropine or tropicamide was used for treatment. After examination, we enrolled the patients grouped by age (age from 2 to 12 years treated by atropine, 55 cases; age from 2 to 10 years treated by tropicamide, 70 cases; age from 14 to 17 years treated by tropicamide, 70 cases). The ocular biological parameters of each patient before and after cycloplegia were measured, and the difference and its absolute value were calculated for statistical analysis using an independent-samples t test.

Results: We compared the value and the absolute value of the differences in ocular biological parameters before and after cycloplegia in the same age group, and we found that the differences were not statistically significant (P > 0.05). There were significant differences in the corresponding values of AL, K1 and ACD among the different age groups (P < 0.05). Before cycloplegia, there were significant differences in AL, K, K1, K2 and ACD in different age groups (P < 0.05). However, the differences in AL, K, K1, K2 and ACD among different age groups disappeared after cycloplegia (P > 0.05).

Conclusions: This study demonstrated that atropine/tropicamide have different effects on cycloplegia in children of different ages. The effects of atropine/tropicamide on ocular biological parameters should be fully considered when evaluating the refractive state before refractive surgery or mydriasis optometry for children of different ages.

Keywords: Atropine; Children; Cycloplegia; Ocular biometry; Tropicamide.

Publication types

  • Observational Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Atropine / pharmacology
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Ciliary Body
  • Humans
  • Mydriatics / pharmacology
  • Presbyopia*
  • Refraction, Ocular
  • Tropicamide* / pharmacology


  • Tropicamide
  • Atropine
  • Mydriatics