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Changing pattern of childhood blindness in Saudi Arabia.
  1. K. F. Tabbara and
  2. I. A. Badr


    We studied 187 patients attending special educational institutions in Saudi Arabia who were blind before the age of 14. All patients underwent complete ophthalmological evaluation. The visual acuity in 31% of the patients was no light perception and in 58% light perception to counting fingers at 3 feet (1 m). 70% were blind before age 2. Prior to 1962 acquired diseases led to blindness in 75% of the patients. From 1962 onwards genetically determined diseases accounted for 84% of childhood blindness. 56% of this group were the product of consanguineous marriages. On the other hand in the group who acquired blindness only 14% were from consanguineous marriages (p less than 0.0001). We here describe guidelines for the prevention of childhood blindness in Saudi Arabia.

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