Purpose: To compare the effectiveness of transpalpebral scleral tonometry (TPST) and corneal pneumotonometry in children, and assess the discomfort level when measuring intraocular pressure (IOP) by these methods.

Methods: TPST using EASYTON tonometer (Russia) and pneumotonometry using Reichert 7 Non-contact AutoTonometer (USA) have been sequentially performed on 84 eyes (42 children aged 5-14, ave. 9.3 ± 2.7), including 64 myopic eyes (-0.5 to 6.75D), 18 hyperopic eyes (+ 0.75 to + 3.75D), and 2 emmetropic eyes. We assessed tolerance to the procedure on a five-point scale using a questionnaire which listed several criteria: discomfort, presence of pain, fear or anxiety during the procedure, the child’s resistance to measurement.

Results: EASYTON tonometry demonstrated repeatability of IOP indicators when measuring the same eye three times sequentially and almost the same IOP level in paired eyes of isometropic children. Pneumotonometry reveals a greater individual data variability and a more pronounced asymmetry of the paired eyes’ indicators. IOP measured using the TPST was 18.3 ± 2.3 mmHg across the whole group, 18.2 ± 2.3 mmHg in myopic, and 18.5 ± 2.3 mmHg in hyperopic children. With pneumotonometry, the corresponding indicators were 17.1 ± 3.9 mmHg, 16.9 ± 3.8 mmHg, and 18.2 ± 4.0 mmHg. The average score for the TPST (4.64 ± 0.60 points) was significantly higher than that for pneumotonometry (3.85 ± 0.90 points) (p < 0.05).

Conclusions: TPST provides broader possibilities for IOP control in pediatric practice, yielding more reliable and accurate results than pneumotonometry, eliminating the influence of corneal thickness and irregularity on the measurement result, and ensuring a calmer behavior and more comfort of children during the procedure.

Keywords: Children; Discomfort level score; Intraocular pressure; Noncontact pneumotonometry; Transpalpebral scleral tonometry.

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