98th Annual Meeting DOG 2000

P 530

Amblyopia prophylaxis in the Nienburg/Weser district

G. Freitag, S. Peukert, W. Kesper, K.-C. Schipper

Background: From December 1998 to February 2000 an orthoptic mass screening was organised in the kindergartens of the Nienburg district. The survey was carried out on a total of 1077 children, aged 2 to 6 years. The target was an early diagnosis of amblyopia, strabism and optical anomaly.

Methods: For the screening the following standardised examinations were carried out by an orthoptist: 
1. orthoptic status (cover-test, examination of motility and convergence, testing of binocularity: Lang-test, TNO-test);
2. examination of visual acuity (in accordance to age by LH-test or with E-hook); 3. skiascopy in miosis for diagnosis of higher grade     
refraction anomalies; 4. anamnesis (family medical history, troubles).

Results: 74 children (6.9%) out of a total of 1077 examined children were treated by an ophtalmologist (glasses, amblyopia therapy). On 668 children (62%) we noted no particular findings. The definition for "normal state" was as follows: same acuity of vision = 0.9, no findings on position or motility and full binocularity. Particular findings were stated on a quantity of 409 children (38%) in total, thereof 276 children with reduced vision. 101 children (9.4%) showed deviations in vision but no amblyopia. On 140 children (13%), reduced vision on both eyes had to noted. Amblyopia was diagnosed on 35 children (3.3%), whereof 10 children were not treated. Alterations of binocularity such as strabism, altered motility or nystagmus were found on 109 children (10.1%). For a quantity of 24 children (2.2%) no results could be noted due to their non-compliance.

Conclusions: Only a total of 35 amblyopia (3.3%) were found in contrast to a prevalence of 5% to 6% (W. Haase). In our opinion, this is a result of the good co-operation between pediatrists and ophtalmologists aiming at prophylaxis and early diagnosis of amblyopia and their relevant risk factors. A total of 38% of all children tested showed particular status of the eyes that needed further control. We think that a field covering application of this orthoptic screening does make sense. That is the reason for the foundation of the incorporated society "Verein zur F├Ârderung der Fr├╝herkennung von Fehlern des visuellen Systems im Vorschulalter e.V." supporting early diagnosis of vision defects of pre-school aged children.

G. Freitag, Lange Str. 61, D 31582 Nienburg