Knowledge and Awareness of Glaucoma in Subjects with Glaucoma and their Normal First-Degree Relatives

Ali Riza Cenk CELEBI

Abstract


The objective of this study was to assess knowledge and awareness of glaucoma in subjects with glaucoma and their normal first-degree relatives. Awareness and knowledge of glaucoma were compared between each patient and his/her relative. We designed a questionnaire containing a set of brief and structured questions to gather information regarding the participants’ demographics and knowledge and awareness of glaucoma. There were two groups in this study. The first group (“glaucoma” group) comprised patients diagnosed with glaucoma, while the second group (“relatives” group) consisted of the first-degree relatives of the patients. Ninety-one participants aged over 40 years (mean, 48.5 years) filled the questionnaire. Thirty-four participants belonged to the glaucoma group, while the remaining were first-degree relatives of the patients. According to the responses obtained, 26 (76%) participants in the glaucoma group and 47 (82%) participants in the relatives group had heard of the term “glaucoma.” There were no statistically significant differences related to age or gender in glaucoma awareness. Glaucoma awareness was positively associated with education level in both groups (p < 0.0001). The definition of “glaucoma” in the glaucoma group and the relatives group was known to 20 (58.8%) and 17 (29.8%) participants, respectively, and the difference was statistically significant (p < 0.0001). The adjusted odds ratios for awareness and knowledge of glaucoma were 75.2 (95% confidence interval [CI], 11.80 to 366.65) and 148.7 (95% CI, 14.07 to 1646.52), respectively, for individuals with a university graduate level of education. In our study, education level was the only demographic indicator that was a predictor of knowledge and awareness of glaucoma. While more scientific evidence is obtained, community education with focus on the promotion of knowledge and awareness of glaucoma would be a practical public health strategy, especially for individuals aged more than 40 years with a family history of glaucoma.


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