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Prevalence of glaucoma in the Lao People’s Democratic Republic: the Vientiane Eye Study


Aims To determine the prevalence and subtypes of glaucoma in Vientiane Province.

Methods We conducted a population-based study of 1264 participants aged ≥40 years of age from urban and rural areas of Vientiane Province. Data collection included Snellen visual acuity, slip lamp examination, tonometry, gonioscopy, dilated stereoscopic disc examination and perimetry. Glaucoma was categorised by clinical subtype.

Results The mean age of the 1264 participants was 57.6 years; 91.9% of eyes had a gradable disc. The prevalence of glaucoma of any category in at least one eye was 1.54% (95% CI 0.66% to 3.59%). The overall prevalence of primary open-angle glaucoma, primary angle-closure glaucoma and secondary glaucoma was 0.62% (95% CI 0.19% to 1.98%), 0.55% (95% CI 0.12% to 2.54%) and 0.37% (95% CI 0.07% to 1.86%); 12 (66.7%) of participants with glaucoma were at least unilaterally blinded by WHO definition.

Conclusions The prevalence of glaucoma in the Vientiane Eye Study is relatively low compared with the prevalence reported in other studies from Asian regions; however, the median age in this study was low, reflecting the age group of the population and the rapid urbanisation occurring in the Lao People’s Democratic Republic. Nevertheless, glaucoma remains a blinding disease in this population.

  • glaucoma
  • epidemiology

Data availability statement

Data are available on reasonable request via email to corresponding author.

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