Background: Refractive errors (myopia, hyperopia and amblyopia), like schizophrenia, have a strong genetic cause, and dopamine has been proposed as a potential mediator in their pathophysiology. The present study explored the association between refractive errors in adolescence and schizophrenia, and the potential familiality of this association. Methods: The Israeli Draft Board carries a mandatory standardized visual accuracy assessment. 678,674 males consecutively assessed by the Draft Board and found to be psychiatrically healthy at age 17 were followed for psychiatric hospitalization with schizophrenia using the Israeli National Psychiatric Hospitalization Case Registry. Sib-ships were also identified within the cohort. Results: There was a negative association between refractive errors and later hospitalization for schizophrenia. Future male schizophrenia patients were two times less likely to have refractive errors compared with never-hospitalized individuals, controlling for intelligence, years of education and socioeconomic status [adjusted Hazard Ratio = .55; 95% confidence interval .35-.85]. The non-schizophrenic male siblings of schizophrenia patients also had lower prevalence of refractive errors compared to never-hospitalized individuals. Conclusions: Presence of refractive errors in adolescence is related to lower risk for schizophrenia. The familiality of this association suggests that refractive errors may be associated with the genetic liability to schizophrenia.