Cataract related blindness in India & its social implications

Indian J Med Res. 1997 Oct:106:312-24.


The prevalence of blindness in India is 14.9 per 1000. Eighty per cent of this blindness is due to cataract alone. Most of the cataract blinds in the country are in the rural areas while the surgical service delivery network is concentrated in the urban areas. Thus a large proportion of patients in the rural areas continue to remain blind. This situation has many social implications. There is loss of productivity, breakdown of interpersonal relationships, depressive manifestations, loss of self esteem and most patients lead an isolated humiliating life. Patients lack information on the available services and continue to remain blind for years even after being diagnosed as operable. This is unfortunate because cataract surgery is one of the most cost effective health interventions known and most operated patients, irrespective of the surgical technique, are immensely satisfied with the level of visual rehabilitation after surgery.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Blindness / epidemiology
  • Blindness / etiology*
  • Cataract / complications*
  • Humans
  • India / epidemiology
  • Prevalence
  • Rural Population
  • Social Isolation
  • Socioeconomic Factors