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Year : 2006  |  Volume : 54  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 189-193

Need for optical and low vision services for children in schools for the blind in North India

Dr. Rajendra Prasad Centre for Ophthalmic Sciences, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India

Correspondence Address:
Jeewan S Titiyal
Dr. Rajendra Prasad Centre for Ophthalmic Sciences, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Ansari Nagar, New Delhi - 110 029
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0301-4738.27071

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Context: Children admitted in blind schools need low vision assessment for improving functional vision (useful residual vision). Aim: To ascertain the need for spectacles and magnifiers as low vision devices (LVD) in children with useful residual vision, attending blind schools. Setting and Design: Cross-sectional study conducted in 13 blind schools in Delhi, North India. Materials and Methods: Of a total of 703 children (less than 16 years of age) examined, 133 (18.91%) with useful residual vision were refracted and analyzed. High addition plus lenses (range 5-30 diopters) were used as spectacle magnifiers for near LVD assessment. "World health organization (WHO)/ prevention of blindness (PBL) eye examination record for children with blindness and low vision", was used to collect data. SPSS (statistical package for the social science), version 10.0 was used for analysis. Results: Based on the vision of 133 children at initial examination, 70.7% children were blind and 12.0% were severely visually impaired (SVI). 20.3% children improved by at least one WHO category of blindness after refraction. With best correction, 50.4% children were still blind and 13.5% were SVI. Visual acuity in the better eye after refraction in 47 children (35.3%), improved with spectacles. Children with aphakia (17), coloboma (5), refractive error (5) and microphthalmos (4) benefited from spectacles. Of 124 children with low vision but having useful residual vision, 51 (41.1%) were able to read N-10 unaided or with distance spectacles and 30 children (22.6%) improved to N-10 with spectacle magnifiers and were prescribed the same. Conclusion: Visually impaired children with aphakia and congenital anomalies of the eye benefit from refraction and low vision services.

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