- Muhit, MA; Shahjahan, M; Hassan, A; Wazed, A; Ahmed, N
- Early detection of blind children at the household and community level is critical in reducing the global burden of visual impairment and childhood blindness. The aim of the study is to identify a range of potential issues relating to parental awareness and perceptions of common eye diseases affecting children. It was a descriptive and cross sectional study. Parents were recruited from four selected Upazillas ('pouroshoba' - 25% and rural - 75%) in the Naogaon district of Bangladesh. The method used in this study to assess parental knowledge and belief was by means of a questionnaire. The selected subjects were interviewed in detail using a structured questionnaire. It is mentionable that among common eye disease, about three-fourth of the parents informed that vitamin-A deficiency was the leading cause of blindness and more than one quarter believed that eye infection was the important cause of childhood blindness. Very few reported that injury in eye was the cause of childhood blindness. Analysis of respondents of this study revealed that half of the parents believed that childhood cataract is untreatable. Approximately 90% those surveyed were unaware of schooling systems for blind children and only 5% sought treatment from an ophthalmologist. This study also demonstrates that the health seeking behavior of parents and their extended families is poor. The mean age of the parents was 32.5±9.3 years, about 75% of parents had education up to primary level, and only 3.7% of them had graduation degree and above. The findings reinforce the necessity of parental awareness of common eye diseases in children and the importance of seeking timely advice including treatment based on informed decisions.
- January 1, 2011
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