Pattern of refractive errors in Buraydah. How serious is the problem?
Objective: The incidence of refractive errors is on the rise globally. This study was done to assess the pattern and prevalence of various errors of refraction including myopia, hypermetropia, and astigmatism in Qassim region of Saudi Arabia.
Methods: This is a cross-sectional study conducted in Buraydah city during January 2015. The participants consisted of 188 subjects of both sexes ranging from 2 to 75 years in a shopping mall picked randomly regardless of age and gender. The study subjects were picked up from a temporary eye clinic established for 2 days in a busy shopping mall in Qassim. The refraction was performed on those patients who were willing for the examination and gave consent to be inducted in the study. Those who had any sort of refractive disorders were assessed and classified by the kind of refractive error.
Results: The incidence of refractive errors was found to be reasonably high among general population regardless of gender; however, increasing age was found to be associated with increasing incidence. We found myopia as the most common error of refraction found in 91 (48.40%) study subjects, while astigmatism and hypermetropia were other errors detected.
Conclusions: Refractive errors are one of the main reasons of treatable visual impairment in youth. There is a need of standard vision testing in young population to diagnose any such problem at an early stage.
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