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RESEARCH STUDY

RESEARCH

Outdoor Activity Reduces the Prevalence of Myopia in Children

AUTHOR:

Rose, K.A., Morgan, I.G., Ip, J., Kifley, A., Huynh, S., Smith, W. and Mitchell, P.

SPONSOR/INSTITUTION:

YEAR PUBLISHED:

2008

PUBLICATION:

Ophthalmology

KEY HIGHLIGHTS:

  • The purpose of this study was to evaluate the correlation between near, mid working distance, and outdoor activities with prevalence of myopia in school-aged children.

  • This was a cross-sectional study of 2 age samples from 51 Sydney schools selected through a random cluster methodology.

  • This study included 1765 6-year children and 2367 12-year children.

  • Higher levels of outdoor activity were associated with more hyperopic refractions and lower myopia prevalence in the 12-year-old students.

  • Students who combined high levels of near work with low levels of outdoor activity had the least hyperopic mean refraction (+0.27 D; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.02–0.52).

  • Students who combined low levels of near work with high levels of outdoor activity had the most hyperopic mean refraction (+0.56 D; 95% CI, 0.38–0.75).

  • Significant protective associations with increased outdoor activity were seen for the lowest (P = 0.04) and middle (P = 0.02) tertiles of near-work activity.

  • The study shows that the more time spent outdoors, the less myopia and a more hyperopic mean refraction.

This article was identified as a reference for a VII-commissioned systematic review on the Impact of URE on Children.