Dr. Sharubanaa Arun,
BACKGROUND Retinopathy of prematurity is a leading cause of blindness among premature infants. This study was undertaken to develop an effective screening programme to access such premature infants especially for this disease and to study the characteristics and grading of this disease in them. MATERIALS AND METHODS This prospective study was conducted between January 2016 and August 2017 at SRM MCH & RC, a Suburban Tertiary Care Hospital at SRM University campus. A total of 80 neonates of birth weight less than 2000 gms and gestational age less than or equal to 37 weeks were screened and these neonates were followed up for the presence of Retinopathy of Prematurity. Risk factors in these infants were noted and if present morphological characteristics of this disease were recorded and graded. Eye examination was done using indirect ophthalmoscope and a +20 diopter lens after dilating with tropicamide 0.5% and phenylephrine 1.25% which was instilled thrice with 10 minutes duration, in both eyes. RESULTS Overall incidence of this disease was calculated in addition to the incidence of various categories of birth weight, gestational ages and stage specific incidence. P value was calculated to check the statistical correlation between various risk factors and the presence of this disease in the infants was screened. Out of the 80 neonates screened, 21 neonates had retinopathy of prematurity and the incidence of ROP was 26.3% for any stage. Out of the 21 infants who developed ROP, 7 infants were in stage 1(33.3%), 9(42.9%) were in stage 2, 5 (23.8%) were in stage 3 and none of the infants were positive for stage 4 retinopathy of prematurity. In this study, the incidence of ROP for birth weight 500-1000 gms was 29.4%, 1001-1500 gms was 36.6% and 1501-2000 gms was 4.5%. A statistically significant correlation was found to exist between low birth weight and ROP. CONCLUSION As inferred from previous studies, this study also showed that low birth weight and low gestational age make an important contribution to the overall incidence of ROP. RDS was found to be significantly associated with ROP. Apnoea and neonatal sepsis were not found to be significantly associated with ROP in our study.