Characteristics of the Low Vision Population in South-East Nigeria

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DOI: 10.21522/TIJAR.2014.SE.22.02.Art008

Authors : Precious Chidozie Azubuike, Samuel Ononuju Ndukuba, Okechi Ulunma Amaechi


The increasing attention on the indices around low vision and blindness globally is worth noting. With strategic interventions aimed at preventing avoidable blindness and reducing the burden of low vision, research is being carried out to reveal the magnitude, characteristics, and available interventions for low vision. This study was aimed at characterizing low vision among populations in the South-East geopolitical zone of Nigeria. A total of 1473 persons were screened in outreaches across the zone. Clinical assessments, including external examination, refraction and ophthalmoscopy, were carried out, and 239 persons (16.2%) were identified with vision impairment with the various categories established. Data were analyzed using the IBM Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (version 24.0) and presented using frequencies, percentages, and tables. Statistical significance was based on p<0.05. The prevalence of moderate and severe vision impairment was 8.6% and 3.7%, respectively, while blindness was 3.9%. Cataracts (32.6%) and glaucoma (22.2%) were the most common causes of vision impairment and blindness. There was no positive relationship between age, sex and occupation of individuals and level of vision impairment with P values of 0.52, 0.21 and 0.11, respectively. Living in a rural area was not significantly associated with a higher degree of visual impairment than living in an urban area with P=0.81.


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