Lower Self-Perception Observed in Children With Amblyopia

TUESDAY, Feb. 19, 2019 — Children with amblyopia have significantly lower mean peer acceptance and physical competence scores at age 3 to 7 years, according to a study published online Feb. 14 in JAMA Ophthalmology.

Eileen E. Birch, Ph.D., from the Retina Foundation of the Southwest in Dallas, and colleagues conducted a cross-sectional study at a pediatric vision laboratory involving healthy children aged 3 to 7 years. Participants included 60 children with amblyopia; 30 who never had amblyopia but had been treated for strabismus, anisometropia, or both; and 20 control children. The Pictorial Scale of Perceived Competence and Social Acceptance for Young Children was used to assess self-perception.

The researchers found that compared with control children, children with amblyopia had significantly lower mean peer acceptance and physical competence scores (peer acceptance, 2.74 versus 3.11; physical competence, 2.86 versus 3.43). Self-perception of physical competence was significantly associated with aiming and catching skills and stereoacuity among the children with amblyopia. Compared with control children, children treated for strabismus or anisometropia, but without amblyopia, had significantly lower mean physical competence scores (2.89 versus 3.43).

“Our finding of altered self-perception in children with amblyopia who were enrolled in preschool to second grade suggests that remediation of amblyopia may be needed prior to entry into formal schooling when peer comparisons begin to emerge,” the authors write.

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Posted: February 2019

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