Analysis of corneal tomography in select Black and LatinX children



      Keratoconus (KC) is a bilateral and often asymmetric disease which can progress to corneal thinning and protrusion. Keratoconus in children appears to be more aggressive than in adults. Research on pediatric keratoconus is limited, and treatments rely on research and experience in adult populations. The current study aimed to provide an analysis on the distribution of the corneal tomography measurements in an underserved, Black and LatinX, primarily low-income pediatric population.


      This was a prospective study approved by the Illinois College of Optometry’s IRB. A total of 2133 children, presented to a school-based vision clinic within the Chicago Public Schools, were included in the analysis and were classified into three age groups: 3–6 years, 7–12 years, and 13–18 years. Four specific tomography measurements were obtained from the Pentacam (BAD Final D, ART-Max, I-S Ratio, and Thinnest Point Asymmetry).


      The mean front corneal astigmatism of the study cohort was −1.39D ± 1.45. Tomography indices means were 0.95 ± 0.74 for BAD Final D, 457.34 ± 94.83 for ART-Max, 0.01 ± 0.68 for I-S ratio, and 9.60 ± 25.55 for Thinnest Point Asymmetry. A statistically significant difference was observed among age groups for BAD Final D (p < 0.001), ART-Max (p < 0.001) and Thinnest Point Asymmetry (p = 0.006).


      This study provided the first set of normative data for a pediatric population on the four tomography measurements, offering a reference for potential diagnosis of keratoconus for Black and LatinX children. Further study could include evaluation of additional races along with a comparison with the adult data, which will provide guidance on evaluating the current keratoconus diagnosis criteria to aid early diagnosis of keratoconus in the pediatric population.


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