Fungal contamination of eye lenses and frames of patients attending optometry clinic at Abia State University, Uturu, Nigeria.

  • VO Nwaugo
  • OC Ukoha
  • HU Ndom
Keywords: Lenses, frame, patients, fungi, occupational influence

Abstract

Fungal contamination of eye lenses of eye patients attending the Optometry Clinic in Abia State University, Uturu, Nigeria, was investigated using culture technique. Of the four hundred and fifty
patients’ lenses screened between March 2003 – February 2004, sixty-eight (15.11%) had fungal contamination. Aspergillus species (41.1%) was the most prevalent, followed by Penicillium species
(30.9%) while Microsporium species was the least (14.7%). Candida and Trichophyton species prevalence were 26.4 and 19.1%, respectively. Lenses used by the males were slightly, though not
statistically significant (P < 0.05), more contaminated (16.04%) than those from their female counterparts (13.02%). Age significantly affected the level of eye lenses contamination, as individuals
between 21 - 30 years had the highest level of lenses contamination (30.97%), followed by those of 31 -40 years (15.47%), 41 - 50 years (15.68%), and above 50 years had (11.0%). Individuals of 0 - 10 and 11 -20 years had only 2 and 5.0% contamination, respectively. The presence of these fungal species could be significant, as some of them are well-known dermatophyes. Occupational influences showed that
individuals in contact with soil have the most contaminated lenses.
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