Prevalence of glaucoma in rural India

Rakesh Shori, G. Laxmi Prasad, Chaaya Shori, Asha Latha A


Glaucoma is a group of disorders characterized by chronic progressive optic neuropathy resulting in irreversible visual loss. It is a second leading cause of blindness worldwide while it is third leading cause of blindness in India. The present study was carried out to study the prevalence of different types of glaucoma in rural population. In all cases, detailed clinical history and family history was taken. A thorough ophthalmic examination was carried out which includes visual acuity with snellen’s chart, slit lamp examination, optic disc evaluation by slit lamp biomicroscopy and direct ophthalmoscopy, angle evaluation by gonioscopy, intraocular pressure (IOP) recording by Applanation tonometry, visual field analysis by Humphrey visual field analyser(24-2) and general medical examination. A total of 17792 patients were examined of which 133 (0.74%) of various type of glaucoma were diagnosed. It was noted that overall prevalence of primary open angle glaucoma was 0.26%, 0.06% for normal tension glaucoma, 0.06% for angle closure glaucoma and 0.03% for juvenile glaucoma. The prevalence of common type of secondary glaucoma was 0.15% for lens induced glaucoma, 0.06% for traumatic and 0.05% for aphakic glaucoma. We concluded that primary open angle glaucoma was more common with maximum number of cases in the age group of 56-75 years, average age being 61 years. High prevalence rate of glaucoma was due to poor health education, low socioeconomic status and inaccessibility of ophthalmologists specifically in rural and tribal areas.


Keywords: Glaucoma, Prevalence, Rural India.

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Glaucoma Society of India.

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