Pattern Of Eye Diseases In Nigerian Children Seen At Ebonyi State University Teaching Hospital (EBSUTH), Abakaliki, Nigeria

  • GC Onyekonwu Department of Ophthalmology EBSUTH, Abakaliki.


Background: Ocular diseases influence a child's educational, emotional and social development. Objective: To ascertain the pattern of eye diseases in children that presented to the eye clinic of EBSUTH, Abakaliki between May 2004 and June 2005. Methods: This is a retrospective, hospital based study of new patients less than 16 years of age with ocular diseases who presented to the eye clinic within the study period. The medical records of 1022 new patients (adult and children) within the study period were retrieved and 175(17.1%) belonging to children were reviewed. Data on age, sex, visual acuity, intraocular pressure and diagnosis were collected and analyzed using SPSS version 11.0 software. Results: Of the 175 patients presenting with eye complaints within the study period, 92 (52.6%) were males and 83 were females (47.4%) with a male to female ratio of 1.1: 1.0. Of these, 66 patients (37.8%) were 5 years of age or below while 68 patients (38.9%) were above 10 years. Leading ocular diseases encountered were allergic conjunctivitis 70 (40%), refractive errors 21(12%), trauma 20 (11.4%) infective conjunctivitis 19 (10.9%), corneal lesions eight (4.6%) and cataract 7 (3.4%). Strabismus two (1.1%), nasolacrimal duct obstruction two (1.1%), dermoid cyst one (0.6%) and nystagmus 1(0.6%) were the congenital eye diseases seen but were not common. Two patients (1.9%) were blind (Visual acuity of <3/60 in the better eye), 17 patients (16.0%) were unilaterally blind and 8 patients (7.5%) had low vision (VA <6/18 – 3/60 in the better eye) Conclusion: Major causes of ocular morbidity in children were preventable or treatable.

Keywords: Abakaliki, children, diseases, eye, Pattern.

Ebonyi Medical Journal Vol. 7 (1&2) 2008: pp. 4-7

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