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Weaning children with accommodative esotropia out of spectacles: a pilot study
  1. K A Hutcheson1,
  2. N J Ellish1,
  3. S R Lambert2
  1. 1Department of Ophthalmology, University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, USA
  2. 2Emory Eye Center, Emory University, Atlanta, GA, USA
  1. Correspondence to: Scott Lambert, MD, Emory Eye Center, 1365-B Clifton Road, NE Atlanta, GA 30322, USA; slamber{at}


Background/aim: Many children with accommodative esotropia must continue spectacle use throughout life. This study was undertaken to determine which factors are predictive of successfully weaning children with accommodative esotropia out of spectacles.

Methods: A retrospective review of 10 children with accommodative esotropia, who were gradually weaned from their hyperopic correction, and three age matched controls was performed. The main outcome measure was resolution or non-resolution of esotropia following weaning and eventual discontinuation of spectacles. Secondary outcome measures were final refractive error and the final esotropic or esophoric angle without correction.

Results: Six patients were successfully weaned from spectacles. At the completion of the weaning period one child was orthophoric and the other five children had well controlled esophorias. The other four patients remained spectacle dependent because of persistent esotropia or decreased vision without spectacles. The baseline and final refractive errors were significantly lower in the children successfully weaned from spectacles (p = 0.014). While the children who were successfully weaned from spectacles were older when initially diagnosed with accommodative esotropia (4.6 v 2.5 years), this difference was not statistically significant (p = 0.09).

Conclusion: Some children with accommodative esotropia may be weaned out of spectacles during the grade school years with resolution of their esotropia. It is likely that gradual reduction of the hyperopic correction increases divergence amplitudes, but it is unclear whether this facilitates emmetropisation.

  • accommodative esotropia
  • emmetropisation
  • refractive error

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