Purpose: To compare the clinical features of glaucoma patients who present at a rural hospital in North Eastern Ghana and an urban hospital in the capital city of Accra.
Methods: This is a multi-center retrospective case series involving records of newly diagnosed glaucoma patients with emphasis on primary open angle glaucoma (POAG). Information collected included basic demographic data, intraocular pressures and optic disc measurements.
Results: A total of 949 patients (437 rural; 512 urban; 1868 eyes) were included. Rural vs. urban comparisons, respectively: mean age, 53.2 ± 16.3 vs. 54.5 ± 16.4 years; male: female ratio, 3:2 vs. 1:1; POAG, 78.1% vs. 50.6%; POAG suspect, 10.3% vs. 41.9%; IOP, 39.2 ± 7.1 vs. 31.8 ± 7.3 mmHg; bilateral blindness, 34.1% vs. 17.5%; uniocular blindness, 52.2% vs. 32.9%. Females at the rural hospital were twice as likely to present blind in at least one eye (OR 2.04, CI 1.36 – 3.07, p < 0.001). Conclusions: Patients with POAG at the rural hospital present with more advanced disease characteristics.