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Turkish Journal of Medical Sciences
Year: 2011  |  Volume: 41  |  Issue: 4  |  Page No.: 735 - 742

The prevalence of diabetic retinopathy in Faisalabad, Pakistan: a population-based study

Fatma HUSSAIN, Mohammad ARIF and Munir AHMAD    

Abstract: Aim: To determine the plasma prevalence and characteristics of diabetic retinopathy (DR) among Pakistani diabetic patients in the Faisalabad region. Diabetes mellitus (DM) is a major cause of avoidable blindness worldwide. People with DR are 25 times more likely to become blind than nondiabetics. Materials and methods: The incidence of retinopathy was determined in 1524 people with diabetes during April 2008 and January 2009. Physician-diagnosed diabetic patients underwent an eye examination by ophthalmoscopy and fundus photography. Participants were also interviewed and examined in order to determine demographic characteristics and medical history. Results: Of the 1524 patients screened, 183 (12%) had DR. Of these, 7% (106) had nonproliferative DR and 5% (77) had proliferative DR. Clinically significant macular edema was detected in 1.2% of patients. The prevalence of DR was higher in patients with type 1 diabetes than in those with type 2 diabetes. This difference was found to be statistically insignificant, however (P > 0.05). About 3% of the diabetic patients in our study had a family history of diabetes and only 6% had a history of regular eye examinations. Conclusion: This study demonstrated a high prevalence of DR in Faisalabad. An organized approach is needed to ensure adequate prevention and treatment in patients with diabetes.

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