Refractive trends in Swedish Military recruits

Daniel Uhlin, Sten Lutteman, J. Adrian M. Jennings, Rune L. Brautaset

Abstract


Purpose: The aim of the study was to determine the prevalence
of refractive errors in military recruits, with special reference to
myopia.


Methods: 651 male military recruits, 17-23 years of age, were
refracted at Pliktverket in Näsby (a National Service Administration
office near Stockholm, Sweden). The refractive measurements
were taken with a Topcon KR-7OOOP auto keratorefractometer
during the initial health examination of National
Service recruits.


Results: Out of the 651 recruits the prevalence of myopia (≥-
0.50DS) was 37.7% (i.e., both eyes being myopic). The mean refractive
error was RE -0.47DS and LE -0.41DS. This difference
was not statistically significant.


Discussion: The prevalence of myopia in Swedish military recruits
has increased from 8.9% to 37.7% and the mean refractive
error has changed from +0.53DS to –0.44DS since the study of
Strömberg (1936). However, the prevalence of myopia in these
present day recruits is lower than the 49.5% found in 12-13 year
old Swedes (Villarreal et al., 2000).


Keywords


Myopia; Refractive error

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DOI: 10.5384/sjovs.vol2i1p1-5