Knowledge attitude and practices on eye diseases among traditional healers in Kitui District
Before the introduction of modem medicine each African community had a way of treating various health conditions including eye diseases. Most of these practices have since changed. There are however some prevailing practices in certain communities some of which have been associated with many side effects and delays in seeking appropriate health care. Study population: Traditional healers in Kitui District.
Main objectives: To establish the prevailing eye practices among traditional healers in Kitui district and establish whether these healers are able to identify ocular emergencies and refer in good time
Type of study: cross-sectional survey Sampling technique: two stage cluster random sampling technique
A total of 87 healers were interviewed in 3 divisions of Kitui district. Seventy six 87.4 of them said that they could treat at least some of the eye conditions presented to them. Use of plant juices put into the conjuctival sac was the most preferred treatment modality and was practiced by 62 71.3 healers for none specific red eyes 4652.9 for cataracts 4855.2 for ocular injuries and 2124.1 for allergic conjunctivitis. The most performed surgical procedures included rubbing the underside of the upper lid with a specific leaf for allergic conjunctivitis with papillary reaction as performed by 43 42.9 healers piercing chalazia with a thorn or needle by 1112.6 healers and making small incisions and applying herbs for ocular swelling by 44.6 healers. The most preferred treatment for chemical injury was breast milk from any breast feeding mother as practiced by 2933.3 healers. Some healers mix traditional medicine with exorcism and rituals especially for squint as practiced by 1416 healers and ocular tumors by 910.3 healers. The conditions the healers said they would refer included ocular tumors as reported by 4855.5 healers cataracts by 3452.9 healers ocular injury by 3034.5 healers and squint by 2124.1 healers.
Publication Information
Focus County(s):
Kitui County
Programme Area(s):
Natural Products Research & Drug Development (NAPREDA)
Research Priority Area(s):
Disease Domain(s):
Eye disease
Document History:
Publication Date: 30.Jun.2007
Conference Title: