Study investigates changes myopia development in children during pandemic
During the COVID-19 outbreak in China, the development of myopia increased in young schoolchildren, according to a study published in JAMA Ophthalmology.
In this observational study, 2679 students in grade 2 were included. Overall, 2114 of the included students were reexamined in grade 3, and divided based on environmental exposure during the outbreak of COVID-19 (n = 1054) or no exposure (n 1060)
Compared with the previous year, the shift of SER was 0.36 D greater; AL elongation was 0.08 mm faster; and myopia incidence was 7.9% higher. The prevalence of myopia increased from 13.3% to 20.8%
There was an increase from 31.1% to 49.0% in the proportion of children without myopia and with SER greater than −0.50 D and ≤ +0.50 D.
The authors concluded that additional studies are needed to investigate potential long-term changes brought on by the pandemic.
Hu Y, Zhao F, Ding X, et al. Rates of Myopia Development in Young Chinese Schoolchildren During the Outbreak of COVID-19. JAMA Ophthalmol. Published online September 16, 2021. doi:10.1001/jamaophthalmol.2021.3563