Impact of simulated hyperopia on academic-related performance in children.

TitleImpact of simulated hyperopia on academic-related performance in children.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2015
AuthorsNarayanasamy, S, Vincent, SJ, Sampson, GP, Wood, JM
JournalOptom Vis Sci
Date Published2015 Feb
KeywordsChild, Eye Movements, Female, Humans, Hyperopia, Intelligence Tests, Male, Ocular Motility Disorders, Perceptual Disorders, Psychomotor Performance, Reading, Vision Tests, Vision, Binocular

PURPOSE: To investigate the impact of simulated hyperopia and sustained near work on children's ability to perform a range of academic-related tasks.

METHODS: Fifteen visually normal children (mean [±SD] age, 10.9 [±0.8] years; 10 male and 5 female) were recruited. Performance on a range of standardized academic-related outcome measures was assessed with and without 2.50 diopters of simulated bilateral hyperopia (administered in a randomized order), before and after 20 minutes of sustained near work, at two separate testing sessions. Academic-related measures included a standardized reading test (the Neale Analysis of Reading Ability), visual information processing tests (the Coding and Symbol Search subtests from the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children), and a reading-related eye movement test (the Developmental Eye Movement test).

RESULTS: Simulated bilateral hyperopia and sustained near work each independently impaired reading, visual information processing, and reading-related eye movement performance (p < 0.001). A significant interaction was also demonstrated between these factors (p < 0.05), with the greatest decrement in performance observed when simulated hyperopia was combined with sustained near work. This combination resulted in performance reductions of between 5 and 24% across the range of academic-related measures. A significant moderate correlation was also found between the change in horizontal near heterophoria and the change in several of the academic-related outcome measures, after the addition of simulated hyperopia.

CONCLUSIONS: A relatively low level of simulated bilateral hyperopia impaired children's performance on a range of academic-related outcome measures, with sustained near work further exacerbating this effect. Further investigations are required to determine the impact of correcting low levels of hyperopia on academic performance in children.

Alternate JournalOptom Vis Sci
PubMed ID25525890