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RESEARCH STUDY

RESEARCH

Early Detection of Visual Impairment and Its Relation to Academic Performance

AUTHOR:

Carolina Cumani Toledo

SPONSOR/INSTITUTION:

University Juiz de Fora

YEAR PUBLISHED:

2010

PUBLICATION:

Revista Da Associaço Medica Brasileira

KEY HIGHLIGHTS:

  • This study suggests an association between low visual acuity and poor school performance (in the sample analyzed).

  • The study showed that 34.8% of the students assessed had impaired visual acuity and, among these, only 75% had satisfactory academic performance compared with the percentage of satisfactory academic performance found for students with normal VA (89.5%).

SUMMARY

Objective. To detect early visual acuity deficiency of school children and its association with school performance


Methods. A cross-sectional study was conducted with a sample from the third year of elementary schools in the city of Juiz de Fora, Minas Gerais. The examination of visual acuity (VA) was carried out using Snellen Scale, an analysis of transcripts was made and a self-administered questionnaire, previously validated was used. Visual acuity loss was consi- dered when the index obtained by the scale was less than or equal to 0.7 and poor academic performance when the average scores of the last school year did not reach 60 points.


Results. We analyzed 222 students from five public schools. Regarding visual acuity, 31% of students had a change in the right eye and 29.8% had a change in the left eye. In this sample, 15.5% of the students had unsatisfactory or poor school performance. Among the students with normal VA , 89.5% had satisfactory school performance, while among those with VA changes, only 75% had such a performance (p-value: 0.015).


Conclusion. This study suggests an association between low visual acuity and poor school performance in the sample analyzed.