Blindness from glaucoma is prevalent in parts of Africa. Lack of awareness, late diagnosis, poor acceptance and compliance to treatment as well as unorthodox care practices are among many contributing factors. Strategies that improve glaucoma awareness and treatment acceptance are required to resolve this trend.
To evaluate the influence of counselling on glaucoma awareness, willingness to accept glaucoma surgery and eye care practices among primary open-angle glaucoma patients on medical treatment.
A prospective cross-sectional interviewer-administered questionnaire-based study evaluating the demographics, glaucoma awareness, acceptance of operative care and use of traditional eye medications among patients with primary open-angle glaucoma on medical treatment followed up over a 12-month period.
A total of 120 eligible participants were recruited. Glaucoma awareness and basic knowledge were 93.3 and 12%, respectively. Educational attainment and positive family history were associated with glaucoma awareness (p = 0.027 and p = 0.042, respectively). Seventy-five (62.5%) participants accepted glaucoma surgery as a treatment option. However, the duration of medical treatment was inversely related to the acceptance of glaucoma surgery (odds ratio = -‚ÄČ0.390, p = 0.009). Twelve (10.5%) participants use traditional eye medication for their current eye problem.
Glaucoma counselling should be performed with a content template that delivers all relevant information to patients and caregivers. This will bridge gaps in knowledge and improve the early presentation, acceptance of glaucoma surgery and eye care practices.