Purpose To determine whether higher-order aberrations (HOAs) in children from a highly astigmatic population differ from population norms and whether HOAs are associated with astigmatism and reduced best-corrected visual acuity. Methods Subjects were 218 Tohono O'odham Native American children 5-9 years of age. Noncycloplegic HOA measurements were obtained with a handheld Shack-Hartmann sensor (SHS). Signed (z06s to z14s) and unsigned (z06u to z14u) wavefront aberration Zernike coefficients Z(3,-3) to Z(4,4) were rescaled for a 4 mm diameter pupil and compared to adult population norms. Cycloplegic refraction and best-corrected logMAR letter visual acuity (BCVA) were also measured. Regression analyses assessed the contribution of astigmatism (J0) and HOAs to BCVA. Results The mean root-mean-square (RMS) HOA of 0.191 ± 0.072 μm was significantly greater than population norms (0.100 ± 0.044 μm). All unsigned HOA coefficients (z06u to z14u) and all signed coefficients except z09s, z10s, and z11s were significantly larger than population norms. Decreased BCVA was associated with astigmatism (J0) and spherical aberration (z12u) but not RMS coma, with the effect of J0 about 4 times as great as z12u. Conclusions Tohono O'odham children show elevated HOAs compared to population norms. Astigmatism and unsigned spherical aberration are associated with decreased acuity, but the effects of spherical aberration are minimal and not clinically significant.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health