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Year : 2014  |  Volume : 3  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 73-75

Ocular injuries from the horsewhip: A 9 years retrospective study

Department of Ophthalmology, Federal Medical Center, Kebbi State, PMB 1126, Birnin Kebbi, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Monsudi Kehinde Fasasi
Department of Ophthalmology, Federal Medical Centre, PMB 1126, Birnin Kebbi
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/1597-1112.154927

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Background: Horsewhip is a thong made from animal hide and is commonly used among African population to strike commonly, erring children as a form of corporal punishment to correct wrong doings especially at homes and in schools'. This practice is against International law (1989, Convention on the Rights of the child, UN) which sought to protect children from all forms of physical or mental violence, injury or abuse, neglect or negligent treatment, maltreatment or exploitation. Its use is associated with a myriad of vision threaten conditions including ruptured globe. Aim : The aim was to evaluate the prevalence and severity of eye injuries caused by horsewhip and recommend ways to reduce it. Materials and Methods : A 9 years retrospective study of horsewhip ocular trauma was carried out. The following information were extracted from patient's medical records: Sociodemographic record, circumstance of trauma, extent of eye injury, visual acuity (VA) at admission and at the time of discharge. The data were analyzed with SPSS version 18. Results: Horsewhip ocular injuries constituted 20 of a total number of 930 cases of ocular trauma seen during the study periods . There were 13 males and 7 females. Most patients were students 15 (75%). Left eye was mostly affected 11 (55%). Half of the injuries occurred at schools 10 (50%, 8 in Quranic and 2 in formal), followed by home 7 (35%). Cornea was the most affected part by the trauma 7 (35%). At the presentation to our hospital 11 (55%) had visual acuities of 6/18 or worse in the affected eye. The overall visual outcome of the patients as at the last hospital visit shows 50% attained a VA of 6/12 or better, and 50% had VA of 6/60 or worse. Conclusion: Horsewhip ocular trauma is an important cause of ocular morbidity, and the importance of ocular health education as a form of preventive measure is underscored.

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