Diabetes mellitus is likely to have a major effect on vision, and adequate knowledge of its ocular manifestations is of substantial importance to diabetic patients. The study aimed to assess the ocular knowledge and practices among Type 2 diabetic patients of Bangladesh.
This cross-sectional study included 122 diabetic patients from the outpatient department (OPD) of the apex diabetic healthcare hospital of the country under the sponsorship of the Diabetic Association of Bangladesh (BIRDEM). A questionnaire was used for collecting data on knowledge on and practices relating to diabetes mellitus with particular emphasis on ocular issues. A predefined score was used for categorizing levels of knowledge and practices as poor, average, and good.
Of the 122 respondents, 63%, 55%, 40%, 44%, and 30% reported, blindness, retinopathy, cataracts, glaucoma, and double vision respectively, as complications of diabetes mellitus. About 50% were aware of the need for eye screening for people with the complications. Only 8% monitored their blood glucose levels daily, 15% monitored weekly, and 10% reported checking their blood pressure daily and 43% took their medications as prescribed. The level of diabetic knowledge was poor, moderate and good, respectively, among 24%, 56%, and 20% of the respondents, whereas the practice standards showed that 47%, 31%, and 22% had poor, average, and good levels respectively. The knowledge score was significantly associated with the practice score (r = 0.460, p = 0.001).
The results indicate that the ocular knowledge and practices among diabetic patients attending a tertiary-care hospital in Bangladesh is average. Health and eye-care practitioners need to expand diabetic health education and promotion among diabetic patients.