Ophthalmologic Screening in A School for the Hearing Impaired in Turkey

Ceyhan D., Idil A., Ozdemir O., ÇALIŞKAN D.

TURKIYE KLINIKLERI TIP BILIMLERI DERGISI, vol.31, no.6, pp.1484-1490, 2011 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier


Objective: The aim of this study was to screen the ophthalmic disorders in a school for the hearing impaired and to draw the attention to the necessity of early educational and career modifications of children with Usher syndrome. Material and Methods: The study population was 208 of 214 students in a school for hearing impaired in Ankara; ages ranged from 7 to 19 years. All students underwent an ophthalmologic examination, including uncorrected and corrected visual acuity measurement, assessment of manifest refraction, slit lamp biomicroscopy and fundoscopy. Cover/uncover test was done to detect a tropia of more than 10 prism diopters. Students with an ophthalmic pathology were invited for a detailed eye examination. Chi square test and binary logistic regression analysis were used for statistical analysis. Results: Of the 208 students, 72 (34.6%) had an ocular abnormality. One hundred eighty four (88.5%) children presented with normal fundus findings. Of the 24 patients with an ophthalmoscopic finding, twelve (5.8%) were diagnosed with retinitis pigmentosa, three with Waardenburg syndrome and four with atypical retinal pigmentary changes. Female gender (p<0.05) and the presence of a refractive error (p<0.0001) were significandy correlated with the existence of ophthalmoscopic findings. Conclusion: Early referral to an ophthalmic examination is mandatory for the hearing impaired children. In previous studies, higher frequency of ophthalmic disorders in the hearing impaired population had been reported; present study also emphasizes the necessity of educational and career modifications in hearing impaired children with retina pathologies. Detection and early intervention of ophthalmologic abnormalities is important for the normal development of cognitive and social skills and also for education and career modifications.