Texas researchers studying vision problems in youngsters | KOB 4
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Texas researchers studying vision problems in youngsters

NBC News Channel
October 26, 2017 05:23 PM

DENTON, Texas (KXAS) -- A group of 4-year-olds at Hubbard Heights Elementary School in North Texas patiently wait their turn. Some may be a little nervous. They have to go inside a dark room.

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In that dark room, they'll take a test that could change how they see everything.

The adults taking pictures come from North Texas Eye Research Institute at UNT Health Science Center. Their camera is a refractometer, a $65,000 infrared device that quickly and easily detects vision problems. It does not require charts or letters -- just a nose and a noise to focus a fidgety 4-year-old.

"This is purely objective, which means we don't require a response from the student," said Dr. Abe Clark with the eye research institute. "By catching them early enough like this, we're hoping that they'll get the vision correction they need and perform much better both in the classroom and in the community."

New Mexico has been testing young students' vision in the classroom for about a decade. Kids as young as 3 years old here are screened, and it goes through the third grade.

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