Project: Research project

Project Details


Vision disorders can lead to serious consequences in children and adolescents, including poor school performance, low self-esteem, and an increased risk of juvenile delinquency and injury. Unfortunately, the epidemiology of vision disorders in children is poorly characterized despite the importance of vision loss as a public health problem. There have been several national population-based visual acuity surveys of non-Hispanic whites and African-Americans but only recently has a similar survey been undertaken on the U.S. Hispanic population when the Hispanic Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (HHANES) was conducted in 1982-1984. Unfortunately HHANES visual acuity data have not been published. Therefore, there is presently no published information on the prevalence of clinically-determined visual impairment in Hispanics. This study will: 1) estimate the prevalence and degree of impaired near and distance visual acuity and impaired binocularity in Hispanic children by age, gender and ethnicity, 2) compare the prevalence of impaired distance acuity in Hispanic and non-Hispanic children, 3)estimate the number of Hispanic children residing in the United States with impaired near and distant vision and impaired binocularity, 4)examine associations between measures of social class and vision impairment in Hispanic children, and 5)estimate the prevalence of dual sensory impairment (hearing and vision) in Hispanic children by age, gender, and ethnicity. Data for this project are derived from the (HHANES) and the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey I (NHANES) each of which were conducted by the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS). Vision measures in the HHANES were collected on 3,419 Hispanic children ages 6-17 years and included: uncorrected binocular distance acuity, corrected (usual) monocular distance acuity, uncorrected binocular near acuity, and a screen for amplyopia. Comparable data on corrected (usual) monocular distance acuity for African-Americans and non-Hispanic whites will be obtained from the NHANES I (1971-1972). Analyses will be conducted separately for males and females within the five racial/ethnic groups. Because of the complex multi-stage sampling design used in the surveys, analyses will be performed in three stages: 1) Ignoring both the sampling weights and the design effect; 2) Incorporating only the sampling weights; and 3)Incorporating both the sampling weights and the design effect. This project will provide a comprehensive, integrated analysis of these NCHS studies leading to significant advances in our understanding of the epidemiology of visual impairment in Hispanic children.
Effective start/end date4/1/983/31/01


  • National Institutes of Health


  • Medicine(all)


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