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Contrast sensitivity in 10 year old preterm and full term children: a population based study

Abstract

Aims: To determine the contrast sensitivity (CS) in 10 year old prematurely born children, previously included in a population based study on the incidence of retinopathy of prematurity (ROP), and in full term controls.

Methods: This study included 205 prematurely born children and 215 children born at term, from the same geographical area and study period. CS was assessed monocularly with the Vistech 6500 test at five spatial frequencies (1.5–18 cycles/deg).

Results: Prematurely born children had statistically significant lower CS at all frequencies, compared to full term ones. The mean differences in logarithmic CS were 0.03 (1.5 cycles/deg), 0.09 (3 cycles/deg), 0.10 (6 cycles/deg), 0.12 (12 cycles/deg), and 0.19 (18 cycles/deg). Even when the children with ROP and neurological disorders were excluded there was a difference between the two groups. Children who had been treated with cryotherapy had the lowest CS.

Conclusion: CS was lower in 10 year old prematurely born children than in full term ones of the same age. Whether this finding affects their visual function in daily life is uncertain.

  • CS, contrast sensitivity
  • ROP, retinopathy of prematurity
  • VA, visual acuity
  • VCTS, Vistech contrast sensitivity test system
  • prematurity
  • retinopathy of prematurity
  • contrast sensitivity
  • children
  • CS, contrast sensitivity
  • ROP, retinopathy of prematurity
  • VA, visual acuity
  • VCTS, Vistech contrast sensitivity test system
  • prematurity
  • retinopathy of prematurity
  • contrast sensitivity
  • children

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Footnotes

  • The study was supported by Stiftelsen Synfrämjandets forskningsfond, Kronprinsessan Margarethas Arbetsnämnd för synskadade, Margit Thyselius fond and Stiftelsen Samariten.

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