Normative Exophthalmometry Values Established for Persons of Hispanic Descent

Understanding differences in exophthalmometry values between ethnic groups can help clinicians with disease diagnosis, monitoring, and treatment.

Individuals of Hispanic descent exhibit higher exophthalmometry values compared with individuals who are Asian or White, but lower values compared with individuals who are Black, according to a study published in Archivos de la Sociedad Española de Oftalmología. Body mass index (BMI) and sex can also affect these values, the report shows.

Researchers enrolled 277 participants (68.2% women; mean age, 63.0 years; 100% Hispanic) in a prospective, cross-sectional cohort study to establish normative exophthalmometry values for individuals of Hispanic ethnicity. The research team recorded exophthalmometry values and interorbital distances (Hertel’s base) for each participant, and used multivariable linear regression to determine associations between exophthalmometry values and age, sex, and BMI.

Mean Hertel’s base and exophthalmometry values among the cohort were 92.0 mm and 16.7 mm, respectively. Exophthalmometry values were significantly higher among men compared with women (17.6 vs 16.2 mm; P <.001), and higher exophthalmometry values were associated with male sex (ß=-1.60; P <.0001) and BMI (ß=0.084; P =.001), but not with age.

“Ocular anthropometric values vary between racial groups,” according to the researchers. “These values are essential when evaluating patients with ocular and orbital disease, as they can be utilized as a reference by ophthalmologists to diagnose ocular conditions, monitor disease progression and resolution, and prepare for reconstructive, cosmetic, or decompression procedures.”

Study limitations include variability in Hertel measurements and the strict inclusion of individuals of Hispanic ethnicity who do not identify as belonging to another ethnic group.


Cheng T, Wang F, Denisova K, Barmettler A. Normative exophthalmometry values in Hispanic individuals. Arch Soc Esp Oftalmol. Published online February 2, 2023. doi:10.1016/j.oftale.2023.02.002