The Prevalence of Fungal Keratits in Selected Health Institutions Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

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Addis Ababa University


Background: Mycotic keratitis is an important cause of corneal blindness all over the world. Geographical location and climate are known to influence the profile of fungal diseases. While there are several reports on mycotic keratitis from developing and developed countries, the prevalence of mycotic keratitis and its etiologic agents in Ethiopia few is available. Objective: To demine the prevalence mycotic keratitis and spectrum of fungi implicated in causes mycotic keratits Material and methods: Corneal scraping was obtained under aseptic conditions with a sterile 21 gauge needle, following the instillation of a local anesthetic by an ophthalmologist. Corneal scraping was inoculated directly onto Sabouraud Dextrose Agar in C-shaped streaks and incubated at 25oC aerobically for four weeks. Cultures of mycelia fungi were identified by examining macroscopic and microscopic characteristics of their colony. Yeasts were identified by employing conventional biochemical and assimilation test procedures and using chromagar Candida culture medium (Becton Dickinson) as per the instruction of the manufacture. Result: Out of 153 cases of microbial keratitis investigated, fungi were recovered from 69 patients giving fungal keratins prevalence of 45.1%. Of these 29 (42%) were female and 40 (58%) were male patients. 68% and 17 % of fungi were isolated from rural and urban patients respectively. Fungal recovery rate was the highest (47%) in age groups of 25-44. Similarly the recovery rate of fungi was higher in farmers in which out of 33 farmers, fungi were isolated in 30 patients. Trauma was the leading predisposing factor. A total 77 fungal isolates belonging to 12 genera were recovered in this study. Of the total isolates mycelia fungi were the most common isolates accounting 64 (83.1%) of the total isolates. Fusarium and Aspergillus species were the two predominate mycelia fungi accounting 21(27.3%) and 19(24.8 %) of the total isolates respectively, with together comprising 52.1% of the total isolates. Cladosporium spp and Scedosporium sp accounted 6(6.5%) and 5(5.2%) respectively. Yeast isolates accounted only 15.6% of the total fungal isolates. Conclusion A high prevalence of mycotic keratitis, highlight the need for nationwide study on the mycotic keratitis and precise identification of the causative fungus and institution of appropriate treatment strategy



Health Institutions