Intraocular pressure and visual acuity across the phases of the menstrual cycle in Nigerian women

  • JA Ebeigbe
  • PN Ebeigbe


Context: Available literature suggests that the pattern of variation in intraocular pressure (IOP) in different phases of the menstrual cycle is inconsistent. Results from studies on the effects of oestrogen and progesterone alone or in combination, on IOP have been conflicting.
Aim: To determine the pattern of changes in IOP and visual acuity during the different phases of the menstrual cycle in healthy Nigerian women.
Method: This was a cross sectional descriptive study. One hundred women aged 20 to 35 years, with a regular 27-29 days cycle were examined during the follicular, ovulation and luteal phases of the menstrual cycle. The
women were examined for three consecutive cycles and mean values were computed.
Results: Intraocular pressure decreased in the follicular phase and rose in the luteal phase. Mean IOP during the follicular phase was 16.7 ± 1.6 mmHg. At mid-cycle, IOP was 15.0 ± 1.7 mmHg and during the luteal
phase, IOP was 16.0 ± 1.5 mmHg. The difference in mean IOP during the follicular phase and mid-cycle period was significant ( p<0.05). Also, the difference in mean IOP between ovulation and the luteal phase was
significant (p<0.05). There was no significant difference in mean visual acuity values across the different phases of the menstrual cycle, (p>0.05).
Conclusion: Intraocular pressure increases during the luteal phase of the menstrual cycle in normal female subjects, an effect that could relate to mildly impaired vision and non-compliance with contact lens wear.
Keywords: Pressure, acuity, vision, follicular, luteal.

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eISSN: 1597-1260