Background Correlation between corpus callosum (CC) size and motor performance in prematurely born children has been described. It is speculated that the organisation of CC can be associated with visual acuity in preterm children.
Aim To assess the relation between CC size and vision impairment, results of Frostig test of visual perception and Visual evoked potentials (VEP) in a group of VLBW children.
Methods 40 children born with a mean birthweight of 1023g (SD 230g) were evaluated at the mean age of 4 years (range 3.7–4.3). The children were examined for clinical signs of vision impairment and were subjected to Frostig test. VEP was recorded after checkerboard pattern and flash stimulation. Morphological brain changes and CC size were evaluated using standard MRI sequences. The MRI evaluators were not informed about the results of visual examinations.
Results Impaired visual acuity was detected in 9/12 cases with abnormal CC (75%) and in 10% of children with normal CC (p < 0.01). There was a significant correlation between the CC size and Frostig test results (abnormal CC group vs. normal CC group: 91 vs. 80.7 points; p = 0.03 adjusted for history of ROP). Absence of stereoscopic vision was more frequent in the group of abnormal CC (7/12 vs. 2/20; p = 0.03). The frequency of abnormal VEP was similar in the both groups.
Conclusion A strong correlation between vision impairment and CC size was observed. This suggests that CC plays important function in integration of visual perception.
Study supported by National Science Centre, Poland: grant number: 2011/03/B/NZ5/05678.