A Survey of Pediatric Eye Diseases in a Tertiary Hospital in Osogbo, South‑west Nigeria
Background: Identifying common eye diseases in childhood is a Step towards the prevention of visual impairment and preservation of vision in children who still have many productive years ahead.
Aim: The aim is to determine the spectrum of eye disorders in children attending a tertiary health institution to plan preventive and curative strategies.
Methodology: This was a 4-year retrospective study of children 0–16 years who presented to a tertiary institution. Through retrieval and study of case notes, information on age, sex, duration before the presentation, month of presentation, and diagnosis were obtained and analyzed using descriptive statistics. Results: Of 1120 case notes, studied, (53.8%) were male and (46.2%) female in a ratio of 1.6:1. The mean age was 8.54 years ± 5.03 and the modal age group was 11–16 years ± 0.85. About 51% (51.2%) had normal vision while (13.4%) were blind. The commonest eye disorders were conjunctivitis 488 (43.3%), refractive errors 292 (26.1%), and cornea-related problems 94 (8.4%). The less frequent disorders found were trauma 65 (5.8%), cataract 63 (5.6%), glaucoma 14 (4.3%), uveitis 7 (0.6%), and strabismus/others 67 (6.0%). Cataract 36/150 (24.0%) and refractive error 107/198 (54.0%) were the most common causes of blindness and visual impairment. Most children presented after 2–3 weeks of the onset of symptoms. Refractive error was more prevalent in females 176/518 (34.0%), while trauma was more prevalent in males 42/602 (7.0%).
Conclusion: The common causes of ocular diseases in children in this study are avoidable. There should be an unrelenting effort toward the prevention of visual impairment or amblyopia by the provision of adequate treatment through subsidized eye care services. A follow-up study to ascertain the causes of delay in resentation would be helpful.
Keywords: Children, eye care services, eye diseases, hospital, prevention