Journal of Community Health

, Volume 39, Issue 3, pp 508–513 | Cite as

Oculocutaneous Albinism: Identifying and Overcoming Barriers to Vision Care in a Nigerian Population

  • N. N. Udeh
  • B. I. Eze
  • S. N. Onwubiko
  • O. C. Arinze
  • E. N. Onwasigwe
  • R. E. Umeh
Original Paper


To assess eye care service utilization, and identify access barriers in a south-eastern Nigerian albino population. The study was a population-based, cross-sectional survey conducted in Enugu state between August, 2011 and January, 2012. Using the data base of the state’s Albino Foundation and tailored awareness creation, persons living with albinism were identified and recruited at two study centres. Data on participants’ socio-demographics, perception of vision, visual needs, previous eye examination and or low vision assessment, use of glasses or low vision devices were collected. Reasons for non-utilisation of available vision care services were also obtained. Descriptive and comparative statistics were performed. A p < 0.05 was considered statistically significant. The participants (n = 153; males 70; females 83; sex ratio: 1:1.1) were aged 23.46 + 10.44 SD years (range 6–60 years). Most—95.4 % of the participants had no previous low vision assessment and none—0.0 % had used low vision device. Of the participants, 82.4 % reported previous eye examination, 33.3 % had not used spectacles previously, despite the existing need. Ignorance—88.9 % and poor access—8.5 % were the main barriers to uptake of vision care services. In Enugu, Nigeria, there is poor awareness and low utilization of vision care services among people with albinism. The identified barriers to vision care access are amenable to awareness creation and logistic change in the provision of appropriate vision care services.


Oculo-cutaneous albinism Vision care Utilization Barriers 



The authors acknowledge the assistance of Mr. Chukwuma Iredu in the area of statistics, Drs Oguama Felix, Okeh Ada, Eze Joy N, and Dr Ama for logistic support.

Conflict of interest



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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • N. N. Udeh
    • 1
  • B. I. Eze
    • 1
  • S. N. Onwubiko
    • 1
  • O. C. Arinze
    • 1
  • E. N. Onwasigwe
    • 1
  • R. E. Umeh
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of OphthalmologyUniversity of Nigeria Teaching HospitalEnuguNigeria

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