Prevalence and causes of low vision and blindness in the Extreme North Province of Cameroon, West Africa

Ophthalmic Epidemiol. 1996 Mar;3(1):23-33. doi: 10.3109/09286589609071598.


A survey to determine the prevalence and causes of blindness and visual impairment in the Extreme North Province of Cameroon was conducted in the Spring of 1992. A total of 10,647 people age 6 years and older was selected from a multi-stage, clustered sample stratified by ecological zone. The subjects were examined by ophthalmologist-led teams for visual acuity and ocular diseases. Approximately 1.2% of the sample was bilaterally blind by the World Health Organization classification (Category 3) of vision less than the ability to count fingers at 3 meters. Similarly to results found in other developing countries, senile cataract was the most common diagnosis encountered and the most frequent principal cause of low vision and blindness.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Distribution
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Blindness / diagnosis
  • Blindness / epidemiology*
  • Blindness / etiology
  • Cameroon / epidemiology
  • Child
  • Data Interpretation, Statistical
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prevalence
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Rural Population
  • Sex Distribution
  • Urban Population
  • Vision, Low / diagnosis
  • Vision, Low / epidemiology*
  • Vision, Low / etiology