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Epidemiology of Glaucoma in the Central-African Region – First Results

1Krüger H., 1Schittkowski M., 2Hopkins A., 3Kayembe D. L., 1Guthoff R.,
1Universität Rostock, Augenklinik (Rostock)
2Service ophthlamologique, Hôptial St. Joseph (Kinshasa)
3Service d`Òphthalmologie, Cliniques Universitaires de Kinshasa (Kinshasa)

Background: In the Central-African region the glaucoma seems to be the third frequent cause of avoidable blindness following the cataract and the trachoma. So far this disease couldn’t be included in health-programs (e.g. Vision 2020) because of the lack of epidemiologic data’s. Further data are to be furnished with the presented study.
Methods: So far 300 coincidentally selected persons (155 male, 145 female, middle age 40,9±13,25 years) were examined in Kinshasa (D.R. the Congo) (History-taking, visual acuity, refraction, direct ophthalmoskopy (c/d ratio) and quantified retinal analysis with the Heidelberg Retina Tomograph (HRT II), applanation- and impression-tonometry (IOP), cornea-pachymetry). As well as in other studies no visual field was performed because of the lack of persons-compliance.
Results: Altogether 579 (289 right and 290 left) eyes were examined. For a c/d below 0,7 no correlation between IOP and c/d was found, while this was found for a c/d above 0,7. For all eyes with an excavation above 0,7 there was no correlation between c/d and IOP found for an IOP below 25 mmHg, while a significant correlation was found for an IOP above 25 mmHg. Among the 300 examined persons we have seen 20 persons (6,64%) with an excavation0,7 and 27 persons (8,97%) with an IOP25 mmHg for at least one eye. Only 7 persons (2,33%) had a high excavation as well as a high IOP.
Conclusions: Compared with the low number of proved glaucoma there is a high number of suspect cases, which can be identified by the presented screening and be supplied with a regular check-up and if necessary a therapy. Compared with the European population for the African population the value distribution of c/d and IOP seems to be shifted to higher values. This result is to be verified by the planned continuation of the study after investigation of a larger group and by comparing with a European control-group especially regarding the differentiated analysis of the available HRT parameters.