Systematic Reviews
Copyright ©The Author(s) 2021. Published by Baishideng Publishing Group Inc. All rights reserved.
World J Methodol. Sep 20, 2021; 11(5): 263-277
Published online Sep 20, 2021. doi: 10.5662/wjm.v11.i5.263
Evaluation of the red reflex: An overview for the pediatrician
Aspasia Toli, Asli Perente, Georgios Labiris
Aspasia Toli, Asli Perente, Georgios Labiris, Department of Ophthalmology, University Hospital of Alexandroupolis, Alexandroupolis 68100, Greece
Author contributions: Toli A designed the research, performed the literature research and wrote the article; Perente A performed the literature research and wrote the article; Labiris G supervised the paper; all authors read and approved the final manuscript.
Conflict-of-interest statement: All the authors declare that they have no competing interests.
PRISMA 2009 Checklist statement: The authors have read the PRISMA 2009 Checklist, and the manuscript was prepared and revised according to the PRISMA 2009 Checklist.
Open-Access: This article is an open-access article that was selected by an in-house editor and fully peer-reviewed by external reviewers. It is distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution NonCommercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See:
Corresponding author: Georgios Labiris, MD, PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Ophthalmology, University Hospital of Alexandroupolis, Dragana Alexandroupolis 68100, Greece.
Received: January 27, 2021
Peer-review started: January 27, 2021
First decision: May 6, 2021
Revised: May 19, 2021
Accepted: August 3, 2021
Article in press: August 3, 2021
Published online: September 20, 2021
Research background

Red eye reflex test (RRT) is a widely known examination that has been used by clinicians for the diagnosis of several ocular disorders. However, its implementation by pediatricians in the clinical practice still remains controversial. This study aims to highlight the importance of RRT and to provide a practical guide for its usage for pediatricians.

Research motivation

The literature data show insufficient implementation of the RRT. This result is in accordance with clinical observation in our country. Therefore, the present study could contribute to raise pediatricians' awareness on this diagnostic tool.

Research objectives

The main objectives of the present study were the assessment of RRT value in specific disorders (such as retinoblastoma and congenital cataract) and the compliance of the clinicians with current guidelines. Moreover, this article investigated reported limitations of this diagnostic technique and motivated future research for the improvement of this method through new technological achievements.

Research methods

A thorough search on PubMed databases took place by two independent reviewers.

Research results

Eligible articles highlighted the significance of the RRT in the diagnosis of sight threatening or even life threatening eye pathologies. The implementation rates seemed to present a wide range among the countries. This fact, underlines the need for appropriate education and official guidelines from health systems.

Research conclusions

This study demonstrates why pediatricians should include the RRT in their clinical practice and provides a practical guide for the prompt implementation of this diagnostic examination. Further investigations are in progress in order to overcome the main limitations of the traditional red reflex examination.

Research perspectives

The rapid progress of technology achievements should improve the usage of the traditional red reflex method, making it easier and more efficient.