A Clinical Microbiological Study of Corneal Ulcer Patients at Western Gujarat, India
Corneal ulcer is a major cause of blindness throughout the world. When the cornea is injured by foreign particles, there are chances of infection by the organism and development of ulcer. Bacterial infection in the cornea is invariably an alteration of the defense mechanism of the outer eye. It is essential to determine the local etiology within a given region when planning a corneal ulcer management strategy. Laboratory evaluation is necessary to establish the diagnosis and to guide the antibiotic therapy. One hundred corneal ulcer patients were studied by collecting their corneal scraping samples and processing at Clinical Microbiology department of Shree Meghaji Petharaj Shah Medical College, Jamnagar, Gujarat, India during a period of 17 months. All clinical microbiology laboratory procedures followed standard protocols described in the literature. 40 (40%) patients from the age group of 20-70 years had been confirmed as - any organism culture positive - within the corneal ulcer patient population. Fungi were isolated from 26 (26%) corneal ulcer patients. The bacterial etiology was confirmed in 14 (14%) corneal ulcer patients. The major risk factors for mycotic keratitis were vegetative injury (16, (62%)), followed by conjunctivitis (4, (15%)), and blunt trauma (3, (11%)). Pseudomonas aeruginosa was the most commonly isolated bacterium (6, (43%)), followed by Proteus spp. (4, (29%)). Corneal Infections due to bacteria and filamentous fungi are a frequent cause of corneal damage. Microbiological investigation is an essential tool in the diagnosis of these infections. The frequency of fungal keratitis has risen over the past 20 to 30 years. Prognosis of bacterial corneal infection has improved since the introduction of specific antibacterial therapy.
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