Pattern of perforating ocular injuries at Menelik II hospital, Addis Ababa

  • Abiye Mulugeta
  • Samson Bayu


Background: Eye injury is the most common cause of monocular blindness worldwide including Ethiopia. It is common in young and active people, and has economic as well as health implication. Many eye injuries are related to particular occupation and culture. The purpose of this study is to assess various determinant factors of perforating ocular injuries from an epidemiological point of view that may help in formulating measures of prevention and control.
Methods: A one-year prospective study was conducted at Menelik II hospital, department of ophthalmology. A questionnaire was developed and all patients diagnosed to have perforating type of ocular injuries were included.
Results: There were a total of 212 patients. The mean age was 22.4 with a standard deviation of + 15.46. Male to female ratio was 3.42:1. Students and farmers comprised 122 (57.5%) of all the victims. One hundred twenty two (57.5 %) arrived at the hospital after three or more days and 115 (54.2 %) traveled more than one hundred kilometers. School, home, workplace, and entertainment places accounted for 26.4%, 25.9%, 25.0% and 15.1 % of injuries respectively. Primary surgical repair was performed for 123 (58 %) of patients, evisceration and enucleation was done for 39.6 % and 2.4 % respectively.
Conclusion and recommendation: Perforating ocular injury is a public health problem that lacks health care service at a community level. We recommend primary eye care service at all health institutions and appropriate preventive measures that specially addresses students and farmers.

(Ethiopian Journal of Health Development, 2001, 15(2): 131-137)

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