This study aims to describe the epidemiology of ocular burns and related injuries due to fireworks during the Aidil Fitri celebration on the East Coast of the Peninsular Malaysia. A prospective analysis of all patients with ocular burns and related injuries due to fireworks attended three tertiary hospitals in East Coast of Peninsular Malaysia during Aidil Fitri, which was from 10 September to 17 October 2008. We observed the demographic and injury characteristics, extent of the injuries and presenting visual symptoms. Thirty patients with 34 eyes with ocular burns and related injuries were identified. Patients ranged between 2 and 43 years of age. 70.00% of the patients were 12 years old and below. Of the 30 patients, 29 (96.67%) were male and the left eye was affected in 14 (46.70%). Thermal injuries accounted for 60.0% of the injuries whereas 40.0% were due to exploding firework. Burns to the eyelid and cornea (35.29%) were the most common injuries noted. Fifteen patients (50%) were bystanders whilst a majority of patients (96.67%) had no eye protection. At presentation, 15 (44.12%) eyes had a visual acuity of 6/6 to 6/9 in the injured eyes, while 3 out of 34 eyes (8.82%) had vision acuity 6/60 or worse. In conclusion, fireworks cause serious preventable ocular burns and related injuries especially in children who are the most affected age group. It affects mainly eyelid and anterior segment structures which result in moderate visual loss on presentation. Health education, public awareness and tighter legislation are essential preventive measures to limit the effect of fireworks to the public.
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