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Year : 2007  |  Volume : 10  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 123-127

Modifications in ophtalmological care desired by fasting nigerian muslim patients during the annual month-long ramadan fast

Department of Ophthalmology, University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital, P.O Box 13834, Baboko, llorin, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
A O Mahmoud
Consultant Ophthalmologist, Department of Ophthalmology, Unilorin Teaching Hospital, P.O. Box 13834, Bakoko, llorin
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

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Background: Fasting Muslim patients often make arbitrary modifications to their medications and minimize uptake of hospital services during the month-long annual Ramadan fast. Aim: To ascertain the modifications in ophthalmological care desired by fasting Nigerian Muslim patients and draw implication from these on their care during Ramadan. Method: Semi-structured questionnaires which captured information on Muslim patients' preferences for appointment, schedules, inpatient and surgical care, drugs dosage regimen (oral, topical and injectable) were administered on fasting outpatient Muslim patients, who were on routine follow-up clinic visits. Results: The overwhelming majority of the 117 respondents preferred that their routine appointment (95,81.2%), routine in-patient care (108, 92.37%) and elective surgery (109, 93.2%) be re-scheduled to outside the month of Ramadan. Eighty respondents (68.4%) would raise no objection to undergoing a venepuncture procedure during the daylight fasting hours, but only 46 (39.3%) would not object to their having an injectable drug administered on them at that same period. Majority of the patients preferred that the dosage regimen of their topical eye medications (96, 82.1%) and oral drugs (110, 93.9%) be adjusted to not more than twice daily regimen. Conclusion: Fasting Nigerian Muslim patients prefer that their routine ophthalmological care be re-scheduled to outside the Ramadan month whenever possible, and that their drug dosage regimen be minimized to not more than twice daily so as to avoid having to take medications during the daylight (fasting) hours.

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