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Year : 2022  |  Volume : 25  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 5-11

Comparative Analysis of the Impact of Visual Impairment on Quality of Life of Patients Attending a Tertiary Hospital in South East, Nigeria

1 Department of Ophthalmology, Federal Medical Centre, Owerri, Imo State, Nigeria
2 Department of Ophthalmology, University of Benin Teaching Hospital, Edo State, Nigeria
3 Department of Ophthalmology, Imo State University Teaching Hospital, Orlu, Imo State, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Dr. E O Achigbu
Department of Ophthalmology, Federal Medical Centre, Owerri, Imo State
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/njcp.njcp_24_21

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Background: Quality of life (QoL) is defined as an “individual's perception of their position in life in the context of the culture and value system in which they live and in relation to goals, expectations, standards, and concerns.” Visual Impairment affects QoL because of the restrictions it imposes on everyday life activities. Aims: This study aims to compare the QoL of visually impaired patients attending the Eye Clinic of Federal Medical Centre, Owerri with that of normally sighted persons. The findings will aid the formulation of policies guiding the management of visually impaired patients. Patients and Methods: This was a hospital-based case-control study which recruited all consenting new patients with visual impairment, and age, and sex-matched controls who presented at the Eye Clinic, Federal Medical Centre, Imo State, Nigeria during the period of the study. Data was collected using a semi-structured closed-ended questionnaire, and the World Health Organization QoL-BREF and analyzed with the Statistical Package for Social Science version 22. Results: Four hundred and two participants were recruited. Lower scores were recorded in all the quality of life (QoL) domains for the visually impaired compared with controls. The overall QoL and health status mean score for the visually impaired (61.10 ± 19.75) was significantly lower than that for the controls (70.90 ± 21.19) at P < 0.001. Severity of visual impairment at P < 0.001 significantly affected all the QoL domains for the visually impaired with the lowest score noted among the blind (58.21 ± 11.63) compared to controls (79.33 ± 11.74). Occupation and educational level significantly affected the QoL of the study group but not the controls. Conclusion: Visual impairment significantly reduces the QOL of patients. Policies targeted at enhancing the QoL of the visually impaired through rehabilitation and societal integration is recommended.

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