Ocular and Refractive Measurement Associated With Height in Children With Myopia

Doctor preparing patient for MRI
Researchers compared ocular dimensions and refractive measurements with bodily dimensions in children with myopia.

Longitudinal axial length (LAL) and spherical equivalent (SE) are associated with body height in children with myopia, according to research published in Clinical Optometry.

Researchers enrolled 70 children (mean age, 8.3±0.5 years; 50% girls) in a cross-sectional, observational analysis to determine the correlation between ocular dimensions, refractive error, and body stature in children with myopia. Participants underwent cycloplegic spherical equivalent (SE), visual acuity (VA), body mass index (BMI), body height, and head circumference measurements. Magnetic resonance imaging was used to determine the longitudinal axial length (LAL), horizontal width, and vertical height of participants’ eyes. 

Upon presentation, SE was −2.77±1.10 diopters (D), mean BCVA was −0.01±0.07 logarithm of the minimum angle of resolution (logMAR), and mean corneal curvature was 43.43 ±1.21 D. Mean body height was 125.24±7.54 cm, mean body weight was 26.67±5.74 kg, mean head circumference was 50.46 ±0.94 cm and mean BMI was 16.95±2.89 kg/m2. Ocular dimension measurements were 23.72 ±0.82 mm for LAL, 23.40±0.82 mm for vertical height, and 23.16±0.80 mm for horizontal width. No significant differences were noted between genders for refractive, ocular dimensional, or bodily measurements.

Overall, body height was significantly correlated with LAL and SE (P <.001), and multivariate linear regression confirmed that longer LAL and more myopic SE were associated with increased body height (P <.001 for both). However, LAL and SE were not associated with BMI (P =.894 and P =.413) or head circumference (P =.305 and P =.226). For every 1-cm increase in body height, there was a 0.056 mm increase in LAL (P <.001) and a −0.081 D increase in SE (P <.001).

“The results of this study showed that one of the ocular dimensions (LAL) and refractive error are associated with body height in myopic children,” according to the researchers. “Myopic eyes tend to elongate more in the axial dimension, and the correlation between LAL and body height was positive. This indicates that LAL elongation needs to be monitored in children undergoing rapid body height growth spurts.”

Study limitations include a small sample size and failure to include children who were not of Chinese ethnicity. 

Disclosure: This research was supported by Menicon, Ltd. Several study authors also declared affiliations with biotech, pharmaceutical, and/or clinical research organizations. Please see the original reference for a full list of authors’ disclosures.


Mohd-Ali B, Low YC, Shahimin MM, et al. Ocular dimensions, refractive error, and body stature in young Chinese children with myopia in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Clin Optom (Auckl). Published online July 22, 2022. doi:10.2147/OPTO.S368672