Very low birthweight children are at risk for subtle vision defects that ultimately can affect IQ scores, according to English researchers.

Subjects, ages 11 to 13, were tested for visual function. Study participants included 137 very low birthweight children (620 to 1500 g), and 163 normal birthweight controls. Researchers measured children's IQ and tested monocular visual acuity, strabismus, stereoscopic vision, sensitivities to contrasts, and gross and fine motor skills.

Approximately 63 percent of the very low birthweight group had measurable vision problems compared to 39 percent of controls.

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