Sociodemographic factors responsible for blindness in diabetic Egyptian patients
Khaled Gamal Ibraheem Abueleinen1, Hany El-Mekawey1, Yasser Sayed Saif2, Amr Khafagy1, Hoda Ibrahim Rizk3, Eman M Eltahlawy4
1Department of Ophthalmology, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt; 2Department of Ophthalmology, Beni-Suef University, Beni-Suef, Egypt; 3Department of Public Health, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt; 4Public Health and Community Medicine National Research Center, Cairo, Egypt
Purpose: To evaluate factors behind the delay in diagnosis and treatment among Egyptian patients who present with complicated diabetic retinopathy.
Methods: Observational cross-sectional study of diabetic patients with advanced diabetic retinopathy. Patients were asked to answer a questionnaire to assess the impact of several sociodemographic factors.
Results: A total of 397 patients agreed to take the questionnaire. Diabetic vitreous hemorrhage was the most common ocular complication and was found in 359 patients (90.4%). A total of 158 (39.8%) patients knew that diabetes mellitus can be sight threatening, while 240 (60.2%) were not aware until they developed sight threatening complication. A total of 179 patients (45.1%) had early retirement because of visual loss related to diabetes mellitus. Multivariate logistic regression has shown that education, internist, contact with other patients, and media were respectively significant in predicting the awareness of patients about the sight-threatening effect of diabetic retinopathy.
Conclusion: Patient education regarding diabetes and diabetic eye disease is essential for early detection and compliance with treatment. Illiteracy has a significant impact on development of sight-threatening diabetic complications. The internist is the first line of prophylaxis. Media has to participate more in patient education.
Keywords: blindness, education, laser photocoagulation, macular edema, vitreous hemorrhage
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