Background: There is little information regarding glaucoma in Uganda, although glaucoma is known as the
leading cause of irreversible blindness.
Objectives: To determine the types, the extent of damage, and the risk factors for glaucoma encountered in
black glaucoma patients attending Ruharo Eye Centre in South Western Uganda.
Methods: Hospital based cross sectional study which was carried out on 109 unselected consecutive adult
glaucoma patients (40 years and older) who visited Ruharo Eye Centre between June 2009 and December
2009. Univariate and multivariate regression analysis were employed to identify factors influencing the
extent of damage caused by glaucoma.
Results: Primary open angle glaucoma (64.2%) was the commonest type of glaucoma followed by NTG
(13.8%), pseudoexfoliative glaucoma (7.3%), traumatic glaucoma (5.5%), pigmentary glaucoma (4.6%),
primary angle closure (1.8%), neovascular glaucoma (1.8%), and angle recession glaucoma (0.9%). The mean
age of participants was 63.67 ± 12.97 years. Participants reported 26.34 months after the onset of symptoms.
Mean intraocular pressure and central corneal thickness were 32.72 ± 11.55 mm Hg and 516.19 ± 39.95
μm respectively. Increased intraocular pressure was significantly associated with poor visual acuity and
end-stage optic disc cupping.
Conclusions: Primary open angle glaucoma was the commonest type of glaucoma; patients reported late with
advanced damage; intraocular pressure was higher and central corneal thickness was much thinner in this
study population compared to Caucasians, Latinos, and Asians. Increased intraocular pressure influences
significantly visual acuity deterioration and optic disc cupping.
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