PURPOSE. To determine the incidence and progression rates of myopia in young Singaporean children. METHODS. A prospective cohort study, the Singapore Cohort Study of the Risk Factors for Myopia (SCORM), was conducted in two schools in Singapore (1999-2002). Children aged 7 to 9 years (n = 981) were followed up over a 3-year period. Cycloplegic autorefraction and biometry parameter measures were performed annually, according to the same protocol. RESULTS. The 3-year cumulative incidence rates were 47.7% (95% confidence interval [CI]: 42.2-53.3), 38.4% (95% CI: 31.4-45.4), and 32.4% (95% CI: 21.8-43.1) for 7-, 8-, and 9-year-old children, respectively. The 3-year cumulative incidence rates were higher in Chinese (49.5% vs. 27.2%) and in 7-year-old compared with 9-year-old children at baseline (47.7% vs. 32.4%), though the latter relationship was of borderline significance after adjustment for race, gender, amount of reading (books/week), and parental myopia (P = 0.057). Premyopic children with greater axial lengths, vitreous chamber depths, and thinner lenses were more prone to the development of myopia, after controlling for age, gender, race, reading, and parental myopia. The 3-year mean cumulative myopia progression rates were -2.40 D (95% CI: -2.57 to -2.22) in 7-year-old myopic children, -1.97 (95% CI: - 2.16 to -1.78) in 8-year-olds, and -1.71 (95% CI: -1.98 to -1.44) in 9-year-olds. CONCLUSIONS. Both the incidence and progression rates of myopia are high in Singaporean children.
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