Common Forms of Childhood Esotropia

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Objective: To determine the most common forms of childhood esotropia. Design: Prospective, consecutive, observational case series. Participants: All esotropic children younger than 11 years of age from a predominantly rural Appalachian region evaluated from August 1, 1995 through July 31, 1998. Methods: Demographic and clinical data were collected for all patients. Main Outcome Measures: The percentage ratio of the various forms of childhood esotropia. Results: Two hundred twenty-one consecutive children without prior surgical treatment were evaluated for esotropia. One hundred seventeen (52.9%) of the 221 children had some form of accommodative esotropia, 38 (17.2%) were associated with congenital or acquired abnormalities of the central nervous system, 23 (10.4%) displayed acquired nonaccommodative esotropia, 15 (6.8%) resulted from ocular sensory defects, 12 (5.4%) had confirmed congenital esotropia, seven (3.2%) had paralytic esotropia, and an unverified age at onset prevented an accurate categorization in the remaining nine (4.1%). Conclusions: Children with accommodative esotropia accounted for more than half of the study patients and were diagnosed nearly 10 times more frequently than children with congenital esotropia. Esotropic patients with central nervous system defects or with an acquired nonaccommodative deviation were also more common than children with congenital esotropia. Children with congenital esotropia or with a paralytic or sensory cause of their deviation were relatively uncommon.