Trachoma is the leading infectious cause of blindness worldwide, and epidemiologic studies of factors that may increase the transmission of ocular Chlamydia trachomatis are needed. In two villages in a hyperendemic area of Central Tanzania, 472 (90%) of 527 preschool-aged children were examined for specific signs of unclean faces and presence of trachoma. The odds of trachoma were 70% higher in children with flies and nasal discharge on their faces. Other facial signs were not important. In large families, the odds of trachoma increased 4.8-fold if a sibling had trachoma and 6.8-fold if a sibling had trachoma and an unclean face. Health education strategies aimed at improving face washing need to target cleaning nasal discharge and keeping flies off children's faces.
|Journal||Archives of Ophthalmology|
|Publication status||Published - 1991|