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Year : 2016  |  Volume : 64  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 272-276

Knowledge and awareness about diabetes mellitus and diabetic retinopathy in suburban population of a South Indian state and its practice among the patients with diabetes mellitus: A population-based study

1 Department of Vitreoretina, Giridhar Eye Institute, Kochi, Kerala, India
2 Department of Social Work, Giridhar Eye Institute, Kochi, Kerala, India
3 Department of Biostatistics, Giridhar Eye Institute, Kochi, Kerala, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Bindu Rajesh
Giridhar Eye Institute, Ponneth Temple Road, Kadavanthara, Kochi - 682 020, Kerala
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0301-4738.182937

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Context: Ocular complications due to diabetes mellitus (DM) were on the rise despite good literacy levels in South India. Aims: To assess the knowledge and attitude toward DM and diabetic retinopathy of the general population in a suburban town of South India. Settings and Design: Door-to-door population survey in suburban town of South India in May 2013. Materials and Methods: A 30-point questionnaire was prepared and the data were collected and analyzed to determine statistically the knowledge, attitude, and practice (KAP) scores of the general and diabetic population and also to determine significant demographic associations. Results: In this study, 6211 people (3528 [56.8%] women and 2683 [43.2%] men) with a mean age of 55.6 ± 11.7 years (range 21-98 years) were included. Good knowledge and positive attitude were observed in 3457 (55.6%) and 3280 (52.8%) people. Among 1538 (25.4%) people known to have DM, only 619 (40.7%) had good knowledge, 828 (53.8%) had a positive attitude, and 886 (57.6%) had good practice patterns. Although half of them followed general diabetic care, only 9.6% had undergone screening for retinopathy. Literacy showed a significant association with good KAP (P < 0.001 each) in general population and those with DM. Overall, women had significantly better knowledge (P < 0.001). Conclusions: Better literacy, especially among women, is contributory to better public awareness; however, the trend for poor practice patterns needs to be radically changed with aggressive public motivation emphasizing on the necessity of retinopathy screening and periodic follow-ups.

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