This study estimated the prevalence of uncorrected refractive error (URE) and its determinants in a socially vulnerable older population living in Armenia.
The study design used in the stidy is a cross-sectional study.
A total of 485 people responded to a survey on sociodemographic characteristics, spectacle use, and ophthalmic services’ use. All participants underwent a comprehensive ophthalmic examination including assessment of presenting and best-corrected visual acuity, measuring intraocular pressure and dilated eye fundus examination. Patients who had presenting visual acuity (<6/12) but improved ≥ one line with/without available spectacles after refraction in the better eye were considered to have URE. Descriptive statistics described the sample and estimated the prevalence of the URE in the population. Logistic regression models were used to evaluate its determinants.
The mean age of participants was 74.5 (7.27) years, ranging from 51 to 94 years. Women constituted the majority of participants (86%). The prevalence of URE in the better eye was 26%. In bivariate analysis, those who were older and who had less than 10 years of education had higher odds of URE than younger and more educated respondents. In multivariable analysis, only education remained associated with URE (OR = 3.71; 95% CI: 1.10-12.5). The rate of normal vision (≥6/12) improved from 58.9% to 81.5%, whereas the rate of visual impairment (<6/12) decreased from 41.1% to 18.5% after best correction in the better eye.
The prevalence of URE was high in this study population. The findings warrant the need for eye screening and provision of affordable spectacle correction to the target population in Armenia.

Copyright © 2020 The Royal Society for Public Health. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

References

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