Treatment of severe amblyopia with weekend atropine: Results from 2 randomized clinical trials

Michael X. Repka, Raymond T. Kraker, Roy W. Beck, Eileen Birch, Susan A. Cotter, Jonathan M. Holmes, Richard W. Hertle, Darren L. Hoover, Deborah L. Klimek, Wendy Marsh-Tootle, Mitchell M. Scheiman, Donny W. Suh, David R. Weakley

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78 Scopus citations


Purpose: To determine the effectiveness of weekend atropine for severe amblyopia from strabismus, anisometropia, or both combined among children 3 to 12 years of age. Methods: We enrolled children into 2 prospective, randomized multicenter clinical trials of amblyopia therapy. Herein we report the results for severe amblyopia, 20/125 to 20/400. In Trial 1, 60 children 3 to 6 years of age (mean, 4.4 years) were randomized to weekend atropine plus a plano lens or weekend atropine plus full spectacle correction for the sound eye. In Trial 2, 40 children 7 to 12 years of age (mean, 9.3 years) were randomized to weekend atropine or 2 hours of daily patching. The visual acuity outcome was assessed at 18 weeks in Trial 1 and 17 weeks in Trial 2. Results: In Trial 1, visual acuity improved by an average of 4.5 lines in the atropine plus correction group (95% CI, 3.2-5.8 lines) and 5.1 lines in the atropine plus plano lens group (95% CI, 3.7-6.4 lines). In Trial 2, visual acuity improved by an average of 1.5 lines in the atropine group (95% CI, 0.5-2.5 lines) and 1.8 lines in the patching group (95% CI, 1.1-2.6 lines). Conclusions: Weekend atropine can improve visual acuity in children 3 to 12 years of age with severe amblyopia. Improvement may be greater in younger children.{A figure is presented}.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)258-263
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of AAPOS
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 2009
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Ophthalmology

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