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Year : 2018  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 5  |  Page : 1037-1041

Visual acuity and refractive changes among pregnant women in Enugu, Southeast Nigeria

1 Department of Ophthalmology, University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital, Enugu, Nigeria
2 Department of Physiology, College of Medicine, University of Nigeria, Enugu, Nigeria
3 Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital, Enugu, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Z Nwachukwu Nkiru
Department of Ophthalmology, University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital, Enugu
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jfmpc.jfmpc_335_17

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Introduction: Pregnancy has been associated with changes in the eye which could be physiological, pathological, or exacerbation of pre-existing ocular conditions. Visual acuity (VA) and refractive error (RE) changes are part of the physiological changes that may occur during pregnancy. Objective: The objective of the present study was to investigate changes in VA and RE across two different trimesters and six weeks postpartum among pregnant women in Enugu, southeast, Nigeria. Materials and Methods: A longitudinal study was adopted and pregnant women in their second trimester attending antenatal clinic at University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital, Ituku-Ozalla, Enugu were consecutively recruited. A questionnaire was used to obtain information on their sociodemographic and clinical characteristics. Visual acuity was measured and refractive error monitored in second and third trimesters and 6 weeks after delivery. Results: The mean age of women was 30.81 (±5.49) years and a majority of them were civil servants. There was a worsening of VA for distance in more women in the third trimesters compared to the second trimester. There was no significant change in VA for near throughout the study period. There was an increased myopic shift in more pregnant women during the third trimester (40; 40.0%) compared to second trimester (36; 36.0%). The most common refractive error found among the women was simple myopia. These changes resolved six weeks postpartum. Conclusion: Pregnancy worsened VA for distance and the most common RE in pregnant women was simple myopia. However, these changes resolved during the postpartum period.

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