A clinical study on prevalence of amblyopia and r.e. in school children of kamrup(metro) district of assam, a n.e. state of india

Kalita S and Baishya KB

Aims And Objectives: The aim was to study the clinicodemographic profile of amblyopia and refractive error in 5-16 yrs in Kamrup (Metro) district of Assam, a North Eastern state of Assam.

Materials And Methods: This is a cross-sectional study, carried out in Government and private schools of Kamrup (Metro) region, during the academic session 2014-15.The study has been conducted from a tertiary care hospital in Guwahati, Assaam. A total of 12,104 students in the age group of 5 to 16 years were screened belonging to govt and private schools in Kamrup (Metro) region during the academic session 2014-2015 by a team, consisting of an ophthalmologist, an ophthalmology post graduate trainee and an ophthalmic assistant. Assessment of Va for distance was done with Snellen’s visual acuity chart at class room illumination. Glass prescription was given to those with Vd <6/6 on the basis of cycloplegic refraction. Those with BCVA <6/6 were referred to RIO, GMCH for final diagnosis and further management. Treatment for amblyopia was done with macular (H.B.) stimulation and occlusion therapy in RIO, GMCH.

Results: Out of 12104 students screened, 845(7.0%) had refractive errors. Prevalence of amblyopia was found to be 98(0.81%). Higher prevalence of amblyopia is noted in boys and it is statistically significant. Myopia (65.9%) is found to be the most common refractive error in our study, however hypermetropia is the commonest refractive error in amblyopic children (58.2%) and it is statistically significant. The commonest type of amblyopia in our study is found to be anisometropic amblyopia (30.61%). The average age at which the child presents with amblyopia is 9.204±1.414 years with maximum children presented at the age group of 8 to 10 yrs (50%).Most of the amblyopic patients presented with visual acuity from 6/18 to 6/36 (43.87%).

Conclusion: As amblyopia is a preventable and treatable cause of paediatric low vision, early diagnosis and treatment of amblyopia can lead to a gross reduction in prevalence of amblyopia.
Thus, school eye screening can go a long way in early detection and spreading awareness to help reduce prevalence of uncorrected refractive error and amblyopia, , hence reducing childhood blindness.

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