PREVALENCE OF VITAMIN-A DEFICIENCY & REFRACTIVE ERRORS IN PRIMARY SCHOOL-GOING CHILDREN
Keywords:Vitamin A deficiency, refractive error, primary school going children
Purpose: The objectives of the study were to assess refractive errors in primary school-going children; to critically analyze the need for supplementation of Vitamin A; and to children of low socioeconomic strata.
Methods: Students were examined from 2 primary schools. Visual acuity was tested using Snellen’s chart, Pictogram & Landolt C chart. Detailed anterior and posterior segment examination was done using Binocular loop, Ophthalmoscope and Streak retinoscope.
Results: Total no of 560 children of age 3 to 13yr were screened from 2 primary schools.Statistically significant difference was found in the age of the study subject & presence of refractive errors. Percentage of students having Refractive error: myopia (29.64%) is the major cause of refractive error, followed by astigmatism (4.28%) hypermetropia (3.25%) and amblyopia (1.25%). Conclusion: It was observed that many children had high refractive error and were undiagnosed. The possible reason could be ignorance on the part of teachers and parents, even when the children have vision related complains. Also the children in the younger age-group lack the acumen to judge whether they can see clearly or not. Prevalence of Vitamin A deficiency appears reduced in urban areas.
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