Prevalence of diabetes mellitus among patients with ophthalmic morbidity in an urban population in Kanchipuram district

L. Neerajaa, S. Gopalakrishnan, R. Umadevi


Background: Diabetes hastens the onset of cataract, so a patient may get diagnosed of cataract and diabetes at the same time. Checking of random blood sugar values for all patients presenting with visual loss will be both a primary and secondary prevention strategy of diabetes, where in we could diagnose diabetes early and treat it promptly.

Methods: This is a Health centre based cross sectional study done in Anakaputhur-urban field practice area of Sree Balaji Medical College and in Kanchipuram district, Tamil Nadu from September 1st to November 30th 2016, including people with visual complaints of all age groups in the study area, excluding severely ill, mentally challenged and those not willing to participate in the study. Based on convenient sample size calculation, prevalence was assumed to be 50%, with confidence interval 95%, relative precision was 9%, the sample size was calculated to be 494 participants. Previous health centre records dated September 1st to November 30th 2016the data was entered in MS excel and analaysed in SPSS 20 version.

Results: Significant proportion (36.7%) of our study population presenting with visual complaints were found to be diabetic. Out of the diabetics, 69.7% presented with cataract. The other leading diagnoses were refractive error (17.7%), retinopathy (6.7%), glaucoma and others (5.7%) Other factors like positive family history, associated hypertension are significantly associated with diabetes mellitus.

Conclusions: Significant amount of patients presenting with various ophthalmic complaints, especially cataract and refractive errors were found to be diabetic. So, it is recommended to check random blood sugar levels in all patients presenting to an ophthalmic outpatient setup with complaints of visual loss.


Diabetics, Visual complaints, Blood sugar testing

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Available at: Accessed on 3 June 2018.

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