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Year : 1999  |  Volume : 47  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 15-18

Use of traditional eye medicines by corneal ulcer patients presenting to a hospital in South India

Aravind Eye Hospital and Post-Graduate Institute of Ophthalmology, Madurai, India

Correspondence Address:
Venkatesh N Prajna
Aravind Eye Hospital, 1 Anna Nagar, Madurai - 625 020
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

PMID: 16130279

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Purpose: To investigate the nature and frequency of use of Traditional Eye Medicine (TEM) for corneal ulcer in patients from predominantly rural background. Methods: We documented the the use of TEM by corneal ulcer patients presenting to a tertiary eye-care centre in South India during two months of 1996. Results: Of 283 patients enrolled in the study, 135 (47.7%) of the patients used TEM. There was no difference with regard to age and sex distribution of patients using TEM and those who did. Patients with history of trauma were more likely to use TEM. Common forms of TEM used were human breast milk 61(45.2%), leafy matter 40(29.6%), castor oil 16 (11.9%), and hen's blood 8 (5.9%). Conclusion: Though the awareness of intraocular lens implantation for cataract surgery is very high in this segment of the population, it is still tragic that an awareness of primary eye care following trauma has not been created. Health education is mandatory to prevent this avoidable cause of blindness.

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