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The microbiological landscape and epidemiology of ocular infections in a multi-tier ophthalmology network in India: an electronic medical record driven analytics report

Abstract

Objective

To study the epidemiology and landscape of ocular infections in patients undergoing microbiological investigations across a multi-tier ophthalmology network in India.

Methods

This cross-sectional hospital-based study included 15,822 patients in whom microbiology samples were analysed between September 2013 and December 2021. Ocular tissue of patients in whom a microbiology sample was processed in at least one eye were included. The data were collected using an indigenously developed electronic medical record system.

Results

Among the 15,822 patients, bacteria (51.06%) was the most common aetiology followed by fungus (38.27%). The majority of the patients were male (68.10%) and adults (90.01%). The most common age group was during the sixth decade of life with 2,914 (18.42%) patients. The patients were more commonly from the lower socio-economic status (51.61%) and from the rural geography (46.82%). Majority of the specimens sent for microbiological analysis were corneal scrapings (68.61%) followed by vitreous (8.77%). The most common bacteria isolated was Staphylococcus aureus (14.45%) followed by Pseudomonas aeruginosa (12.53%) and among the fungus were Fusarium (30.53%) and Aspergillus species (29.86%). Acanthamoeba (1.26%) and Microsporidia (0.38%) accounted for a minority of the infections in the samples. Fungus (53.10%; p0.00001) and virus (51.08%; p = 0.000673) aetiology was found to be significantly higher in patients presenting from the rural geography.

Conclusion

The most common aetiology of infection in ocular disease is bacterial but fungal infections also accounted for a significant proportion. The majority of the patients with ocular infections presented from the rural geography and from lower socio-economic status.

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Fig. 1: Demographic details of the study.
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Data availability

The data generated in this study is available at the following weblink – https://www.lvpei.org/aeye/microbiology.html and further clarifications are available with the corresponding author on request.

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Acknowledgements

The authors wish to acknowledge the Hyderabad Eye research Foundation and the support of our Department of eyeSmart EMR & AEye team specially Mr. Ranganath Vadapalli and Mr. Mohammad Pasha. Hyderabad Eye Research Foundation, Hyderabad, India.

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The corresponding author states that authorship credit of this manuscript was based on 1) substantial contributions to conception and design, acquisition of data, or analysis and interpretation of data; 2) drafting the article or revising it critically for important intellectual content; 3) final approval of the version to be published. All listed authors met conditions 1, 2, and 3. All persons designated as authors qualify for authorship, and all those who qualify are listed. Each author has participated sufficiently in the work to take public responsibility for appropriate portions of the content.

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Correspondence to Joveeta Joseph.

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Das, A.V., Joseph, J. The microbiological landscape and epidemiology of ocular infections in a multi-tier ophthalmology network in India: an electronic medical record driven analytics report. Eye (2022). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41433-022-02191-3

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