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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 28  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 196-201

Prevalence of color vision deficiency in medical students at a Saudi University

1 College of Medicine, Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University, Dammam, Saudi Arabia
2 Department of Family and Community Medicine, Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University, Dammam, Saudi Arabia
3 Department of Ophthalmology, College of Medicine, Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University, Dammam, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Razan Z AlShammari
College of Medicine, Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University, P.O. Box 1982, Dammam 31441
Saudi Arabia
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jfcm.jfcm_235_21

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BACKGROUND: Color vision deficiency (CVD) affects approximately one in 12 men and one in 200 women in the world. It is considered a problem in the medical field since the color is often used as a sign in the practice of medicine, in observational assessment, diagnosis, and follow-up. These conditions make the appreciation of color essential in doctors' lives, thus we aimed at finding the prevalence and predictors of CVD in medical students. MATERIALS AND METHODS: This cross-sectional study included 1115 medical students. A pretested questionnaire consisting of personal data, history of vision problems, familial color vision defect, eye surgery, bad trauma on the head or eyes, drugs taken or chemicals exposed to, other health problems, and whether sufficient amount of Vitamin A is taken was used. This was followed by the screening of the participants for CVD using the Ishihara 15-plates test. RESULTS: A total of 1115 students participated in the study; 52.2% were females and the mean age of the participants was 21.7 years (±1.4). The prevalence of definitive CVD was found to be 2.1%; all of which comprised males. Eighty-seven percent of the affected participants were not aware of their color vision problem. A highly statistically significant association was found between history of vision problems and CVD status (P < 0.008). No association were found for nationality, marital status, family history of CVD, history of eye surgery, and eye trauma. CONCLUSION: The percentage of CVD in the present study is lower than that reported by previous studies done in other countries. Many medical students with CVD remain unaware of their condition. Therefore, we recommend early screening of all school-age children, and proper counseling of medical students with definite CVD to take care of their own health and wellbeing.

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Journal of Family and Community Medicine | Published by Wolters Kluwer - Medknow
Online since 05th September, 2010