African Journal of Health Sciences

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Visual damage following direct sighting of solar eclipse in Ghana

S Lartey, GK Amedofu


A study was carried out at the department of Ophthalmology and Otorhinolaryngology at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital/School of Medical Sciences, at Kumasi Ghana from March 29th to May 29th 2006 to study visual acuity changes in patients suspected of solar eclipse retinopathy after they viewed an eclipse of the sun on 29th March 2006. In all, seven patients with eye complaints were seen. Examination included assessment of Visual Acuity (VA), Slit Lamp examination, Fundoscopy, Amsle Test, Intra-ocular pressure evaluation and Goldman\'s Tonometre Test. Six patients had normal visual
acuity while only one had VA of 6/24 in both eyes, which was corrected. All patients had
normal colour vision and normal Amlser grid. None of them had any evidence of
Maculopathy. 3 patients had superficial punctuate Keratitis. The absence of solar burns
of the macular observed in the region is indicative of the effectiveness of mass public
education concerning the damaging effects of the solar eclipse. Advanced techniques,
such as scanning laser Ophthalmoscopy and the multifocal electroretinography (ERG)
offer the possibility of detailed examination of small retina lesions in Ghana after an
eclipse of the sun.

African Journal of Health Sciences Vol. 14 (3-4) 2007: pp. 160-163
AJOL African Journals Online