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Purpose: this population-based epidemiological study highlights the prevalence and causes of non-glaucomatous optic atrophy (NGOA) in Ehime Mbano.
Methods: In this prospective study, the case history, visual acuity, pupillary reflex and fundoscopy examination for three hundred and forty-nine (349) subjects between ages 17-85 was carried out using a pro forma, snellen chart, pen light and ophthalmoscope respectively. The presumed NGOA subjects (45) were further examined with perimetry and tonometry to rule out glaucomatous OA. The data collected was analyzed with the use of ANOVA and Chi-square statistical tests.
Results: The highest prevalence rate (20%) was accounted for by retinitis pigmentosa, nutritional amblyopia and unknown causes. Females (53.3%) more than males, had NGOA. Age ranges 57£77 had (20%) highest prevalence of NGOA. Most of the presumed NGOA cases (34.6%) had visual acuity of < 6/6-6/18 (20/20 – 20/63).
Conclusion: The total prevalence of NGOA in Ehime Mbano is 13.0%. The prevalence of NGOA is related to causes and visual acuity but not dependent on sex and age. More studies with larger sample sizes are however warranted to strengthen the correlation. Patients with presumed OA should be thoroughly evaluated as it may be a treatable condition or presentation of some other life-threatening conditions.
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