Barriers, Costs, and Attitudes Toward Pediatric Cataract Surgery at Two Large Facilities in China and India

Jun Wang, Ling Jin, Qing Lu, Rishi Raj Borah, Rahul Ali, Junhong Li, Chandni Chakraborti, Manish Kumar, Jessica Pan, Clare Gilbert, Nathan Congdon

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4 Citations (Scopus)
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PURPOSE: To better understand barriers of costs and attitudes toward pediatric cataract surgery in China and India.

METHODS: From January 2014 to June 2015, families of children ≤ 10 years old about to undergo or having completed surgery for bilateral, non-traumatic cataract at two tertiary centers in China and India completed questionnaires regarding their demographic characteristics, financial status, living environment, health seeking behaviors, and medical burden.

RESULTS: In China, 38 children (23 boys [60.5%], mean age 3.11 ± 2.88 years) were un-operated, and 44 (26 boys [59.1%], mean age 5.09 +/- 2.17 years) had undergone surgery, while in India there were 60 (44 boys [73.3%], mean age 4.61 +/- 3.32 years) and 39 (29 boys [74.4%], mean age 6.45 +/- 2.74 years) children respectively, 181 in total. Chinese children were younger at presentation (p ≤ 0.03 for both operated and un-operated) and also when cataract was detected (median [inter quartile range] 10 [3-34] versus 24 [6-60] months [p = 0.06] for un-operated, 5 [2-12] versus 36 [8-72] months [p < 0.001] for operated). Maternal education levels were lower in India (48.3% and 51.3% with elementary education only among un-operated [p = 0.11] and operated [p = 0.006] families in India versus 27.0% and 20.5% in China), as were rates of consulting medical practitioners for illness (44.7% and 36.4% for un-operated [p < 0.001] and operated [p = 0.001] in China versus 10% and 5.13% in India).

CONCLUSIONS: Socioeconomic challenges to securing cataract surgery may be greater, and delays in obtaining surgery longer, in India compared to China, if these facilities are representative.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-8
JournalOphthalmic Epidemiology
Early online date24 Aug 2018
Publication statusEarly online date - 24 Aug 2018


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