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Debananda Padhy, Shrikant R. Bharadwaj, Suryasmita Nayak, Suryasnata Rath, Taraprasad Das; Does the Accuracy and Repeatability of Refractive Error Estimates Depend on the Measurement Principle of Autorefractors?. Trans. Vis. Sci. Tech. 2021;10(1):2. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/tvst.10.1.2.
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The purpose of this study was to determine the accuracy and repeatability of refractive errors obtained using three autorefractors based on different measurement principles, vis-à-vis, gold-standard retinoscopy.
Accuracy of noncycloplegic, sphero-cylindrical refractive error of 234 eyes was obtained using the rotary prism-based RM-8900 closed-field autorefractor, photorefraction based Spot vision screener, wavefront aberrometry based E-see, and streak retinoscopy by four different examiners, masked to the results of each other. Intersession repeatability of autorefractors was determined by repeat measurements in a subset of 40 subjects.
Retinoscopy values of M, J0, and J45 power vectors for the cohort ranged from −10.2 to 8 D, −1.4 to 1.8 D, and −0.9 to 1.2 D, respectively. Across autorefractors, the interequipment bias of M and J0 power vectors were statistically insignificant (< ±0.5 D; P > 0.05) but the corresponding limits of agreement were ±2.5 and ±1 D, respectively, without any trend across instruments or the patient's age (P > 0.5). Repeatability of M and J0 power vectors were ±0.75 D and ±0.40 D, respectively, across autorefractors. The range of J45 power vector was too narrow for any meaningful analysis.
Refractive errors measured using autorefractors operating on different principles show minimal bias and good short-term repeatability but relatively large agreement limits, vis-à-vis, retinoscopy. Among them, the wavefront aberrometry based E-see autorefractor performs relatively better in all measurement parameters evaluated here.
Although autorefractor estimates of noncycloplegic refractive error appears independent of their measurement principle, their relatively poor agreement with gold-standard retinoscopy warrants caution while used for screening and quantification of refractive errors.
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