What colour are newborns' eyes? Prevalence of iris colour in the Newborn Eye Screening Test (NEST) study

Cassie A. Ludwig, Natalia F. Callaway, Douglas R. Fredrick, Mark S. Blumenkranz, Darius M. Moshfeghi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Purpose: This study aims to assess the birth prevalence of iris colour among newborns in a prospective, healthy, full-term newborn cohort. Methods: The Newborn Eye Screening Test (NEST) study is a prospective cohort study conducted at Lucile Packard Children's Hospital at Stanford University School of Medicine. A paediatric vitreoretinal specialist (DMM) reviewed images sent to the Byers Eye Institute telemedicine reading centre and recorded eye colour for every infant screened. Variables were graphed to assess for normality, and frequencies per subject were reported for eye colour, sex, ethnicity and race. Results: Among 192 subjects screened in the first year of the NEST study with external images of appropriate quality for visualization of the irides, the birth prevalence of iris colour was 63.0% brown, 20.8% blue, 5.7% green/hazel, 9.9% indeterminate and 0.5% partial heterochromia. The study population was derived from a quaternary care children's hospital. We report the birth prevalence of iris colour among full-term newborns in a diverse prospective cohort. Conclusion: The study demonstrates a broad range of iris colour prevalence at birth with a predominance of brown iris coloration. Future studies with the NEST cohort will assess the change in iris colour over time and whether the frequencies of eye colour change as the child ages.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)485-488
Number of pages4
JournalActa ophthalmologica
Volume94
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 1 2016
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • eye colour
  • newborns
  • paediatric ophthalmology
  • prevalence
  • universal newborn screening

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology

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