Amblyopia in children (aged 7 years or less)

Stephanie West, Cathy Williams

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article (Academic Journal)peer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


INTRODUCTION: Amblyopia is reduced visual acuity not immediately correctable by glasses, in the absence of ocular pathology. It is commonly associated with squint (strabismus) or refractive errors resulting in different visual inputs to each eye during the sensitive period of visual development (aged <7-8 years). The cumulative incidence is estimated at 2% to 4% in children aged up to 7 years.

METHODS AND OUTCOMES: We conducted a systematic overview, aiming to answer the following clinical question: What are the effects of medical treatments for amblyopia in children aged 7 years or less? We searched: Medline, Embase, The Cochrane Library, and other important databases up to January 2014 (Clinical Evidence overviews are updated periodically; please check our website for the most up-to-date version of this overview).

RESULTS: At this update, searching of electronic databases retrieved 70 studies. After deduplication and removal of conference abstracts, 51 records were screened for inclusion in the overview. Appraisal of titles and abstracts led to the exclusion of 37 studies and the further review of 14 full publications. Of the 14 full articles evaluated, two systematic reviews were updated and three RCTs and two follow-up studies were added at this update. We performed a GRADE evaluation for nine PICO combinations.

CONCLUSIONS: In this systematic overview we categorised the efficacy for three interventions, based on information about the effectiveness and safety of glasses, occlusion, or penalisation with atropine.

Original languageEnglish
Article number0709
JournalBMJ Clinical Evidence
Publication statusPublished - 5 Jan 2016


  • Journal Article


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