Obesity may be associated with high myopia in children, adolescents – Healio

January 13, 2022

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Lee S, et al. Obesity and high myopia in Korean children and adolescents: Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. Presented at: American Academy of Ophthalmology meeting; Nov. 12-15, 2021; New Orleans.

Disclosures: Lee reports no relevant financial disclosures.

Pediatric patients with obesity were more likely to have high myopia compared with their peers with a normal BMI, according to data presented at the American Academy of Ophthalmology meeting.

“Although genetic and environmental risk factors of myopia have been studied, the association between obesity and myopia has not been well studied; besides, large-scale studies are lacking on this topic,” according to the presentation.

Sami Lee, MD, PhD, and colleagues enrolled in their study 1,114 participants aged 5 to 18 years who were part of the Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey conducted from 2016 to 2018. Participants with data for refractive error, family history of myopia, waist circumference and BMI were included for analysis.

Compared with children and adolescents with a normal BMI, high myopia was more likely to develop in participants with obesity and overweight. Analyzing by sex, girls with overweight and obesity had higher odds of high myopia; among boys, those with overweight had higher odds.

BMI classification had no significant impact on development of mild or moderate myopia.

“The findings of this study are significant in that it identified an association of childhood and adolescence obesity with high myopia involving a large number of subjects,” according to the presentation. “Although additional research is needed, efforts to maintain a healthy weight among children and adolescents will be necessary to decrease the risk of high myopia.”