Journal List > J Korean Ophthalmol Soc > v.51(12) > 1008714

J Korean Ophthalmol Soc. 2010 Dec;51(12):1639-1642. Korean.
Published online December 21, 2010.
Copyright © 2010 The Korean Ophthalmological Society
Clinical Characteristics of Patients With Dyslexia in Korea : Correlation With Meares-Irlen Syndrome
Seung-Hyun Kim, MD, PhD, and Yoonae A Cho, MD, PhD
Department of Ophthalmology, Korea University College of Medicine, Ansan, Korea.

Address reprint requests to Seung-Hyun Kim, MD, PhD. Department of Ophthalmology, Korea University Ansan Hospital, #516, Gojan 1-dong , Danwon-gu, Ansan 425-707, Korea. Tel: 82-31-412-5160, Fax: 82-31-412-5802, Email:
Received June 07, 2010; Accepted November 10, 2010.



To evaluate the main symptoms and associated ocular diseases in patients with dyslexia (reading difficulty) in Korean subjects.


A total of 16 patients were enrolled in the present study. Eleven of the patients with Meares-Irlen syndrome whose symptoms improved with tinted lenses comprised Group 1. The other 5 patients whose reading difficulty improved with other ocular therapy and did not require tinted lenses comprised Group 2. The main symptoms causing dyslexia and associated ocular diseases were evaluated.


The mean age was 18.9 ± 8.9 years in Group 1, and 20.4 ± 12.3 years in Group 2. In Group 1, the most common symptoms while reading were doubling (72%), difficulty to move lines (46%), letter reversal (27%) and blurring or ocular pain (27%). On the other hand, blurring (100%) with fatigue or pain (20%) was documented in Group 2. The associated ocular diseases in Group 1 and Group 2 were refractive error (63% and 20%), dry eye (18% and 60%), and exophoria (18% and 60%), respectively.


Doubling and difficulty to move lines while reading were the main specific symptoms in Meares-Irlen syndrome in the present study. Refractive error, dry eye, and exophoria were commonly associated in patients with dyslexia.

Keywords: Associated ocular disease; Dyslexia; Meares-Irlen syndrome


Table 1
Characteristics of 11 patients with Mears-Irlen syndrome
Click for larger image

Table 2
Characteristics of 5 patients with dyslexia not improved with tinted lens
Click for larger image

1. Irlen H, Lass MJ. Improving reading problems due to symptoms of scotopic sensitivity syndrome using Irlen lenses and overlays. Education 1989;109:413–417.
2. Evans BJ. The need for optometric investigation in suspected Meares-Irlen syndrome or visual stress. Ophthalmic Physiol Opt 2005;25:363–370.
3. Chase C, Ashourzadeh A, Kelly C, et al. Can the magnocellular pathway read? Evidence from studies of color. Vision Res 2003;43:1211–1222.
4. Helveston EM. Scotopic sensitivity syndrome. Arch Ophthalmol 1990;108:1232–1233.
5. Livingstone MS, Rosen GD, Drislane FW, et al. Physiological and anatomical evidence for a magnocelluar defect in developmental dyslexia. Proc Natl Acad Sci 1991;88:7943–7947.
6. Stein J. The magnocelluar theory of developmental dyslexia. Dyslexia 2001;7:12–36.
7. Nandakumar K, Leat SJ. Dyslexia: a review of two theories. Clin Exp Optom 2008;91:333–340.
8. Liberman IY, Shankweiler D, Orlando C, et al. Letter confusions and reversals of sequence in the beginning reader: implications for Orton's theory of developmental dyslexia. Cortex 1971;7:127–142.
9. Fluss J, Ziegler J, Ecalle J, et al. Prevalence of reading disabilities in early elementary school: impact of socioeconomic environment on reading development in 3 different educational zones. Arch Pediatr 2008;15:1049–1057.
10. Skottun BC, Skoyles J. Dyslexia: sensory deficits or inattention? Perception 2007;36:1084–1088.
11. Skottun BC, Skoyles JR. Attention, reading and dyslexia. Clin Exp Optom 2006;89:241–245.