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Population-Based Screening of Ophthalmic Disorders in a Cohort of Nigerian Army Personnel
  1. Dr B I Eze, MBBS, FMCOphth, FWACS, FICS1,
  2. O Okoye1,
  3. NA Hussain2 and
  4. CN Mba1
  1. 1Department of Ophthalmology, University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital, PMB 01139, Ituku-Ozalla, Enugu, Nigeria +234-803-316-5767 xy3165767{at}yahoo.com
  2. 282 Division Hospital, Nigerian Army, Enugu, Nigeria

Abstract

Objectives: To assess the burden and spectrum of ophthalmic disorders among army personnel at the 82 Division of the Nigerian Army, Enugu, South Eastern Nigeria.

Methods: A population-based screening survey in July 2010 in the 82nd Division, Nigerian Army. Data on participants’ sociodemographics, past medical and ophthalmic history, and findings on ophthalmic examination and refraction were noted according to a defined protocol and analysed statistically using p<0.05 as the level of significance.

Results: There were 254 participants (223 males, p<0.05) with a mean age of 36.2 + 9.7 SD years (range 19 -63 years). The prevalence of ophthalmic disorders in the study cohort was 34.6 %. These were mainly refractive abnormalities (22.0%) and anterior segment disorders (13.8%). The refractive abnormalities comprised myopia (51.8%), hypermetropia (28.6%) and astigmatism (16.1%).

Conclusions: The prevalence of ophthalmic disorder among army personnel at the 82nd Division, Enugu, is comparatively high. Spherical refractive error and anterior segment disorders are the commonest ophthalmic disorders. These have implications for needs-based and cost-effective provision of eye care services to this military formation and probably to the rest of the Nigerian Army as well. To generate broad-based comparative data, future multi-centre surveys are warranted.

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