Ocular leprosy in institutionalized Nigerian patients.
Objective This study was aimed at presenting the profile of ocular lesions observed in the in-mates on multidrug treatment, of a leprosy rehabilitation centre in Nigeria. Design Cross-sectional. Method One hundred patients were selected by systematic random sampling. Sixty-nine had ocular involvement and were the subjects of this study. The age range was 15 to 80 years with a mean age of 51 years. There were 57 males (82.6%) and 12 females (17.4%). The range of duration of treatment was two months to 30 years, with a mean of 15 years. Examination of the anterior and posterior segments of the globe and its adnexa was carried out using Penlight, magnifying loupe and direct ophthalmoscope. Visual acuity was recorded using the Snellen charts. Results Lepromatous leprosy patients had the greatest incidence of ocular lesions. Ocular lesions were more in patients who have had leprosy for ≥ 15 years. Madarosis (72.5%) and lagophthalmos (29.0%) were the commonest lesions. Corneal involvement was seen in 36.2%. Conjunctivitis in 14.5% . Trichiasis in 10.1% and ectropion in 8.7% . 17.4% were legally blind (VA≤3/60) in the better eye, and 17.4% had cataract in at least one eye. There was no statistically significant difference in the incidence of ocular lesions among males and females, and between patients with Lepromatous and Tuberculoid leprosy. Conclusion Ocular complications are common and sight threatening in leprosy patients. Regular screening and outreach by eye care providers should be incorporated into leprosy care programmes.