Objective: To assess the prevalence of refractive errors and visual impairment in school children.
Methodology: A cross sectional observational study with convenience sampling was conducted at a school in Kohat, Pakistan with a student population of class 1 to 10, aged 5 to 15 years. A standard eye examination performed and visual acuity was tested without correction, with correction and those with spectacles.
Results: Out of 1644 students who reported for examination, 951 (57.84%) were boys and 693 (42.15%) were girls. 336 (20.43%) were found to be having visual impairment. Out of these, 155 (46.13%) were boys and 181 (53.86%) were girls. Refractive errors found were myopia, hypermetropia and astigmatism as 3.4%, 1.2% and 3.6%, respectively. Amblyopia had already developed in 28 (1.7%) students; 17 boys and 11 girls.
Conclusion: Refractive errors among school children are a common problem and effective strategies are needed to detect and treat them early.
Refractive error, visual impairment, screening vision, school children.