Delhi witnesses around 76 cases of firecracker eye injuries each year, reveals AIIMS study

DN Bureau

The National Capital on an average gets 76 cases of eye injuries sustained from firecrackers each year, according to a study by AIIMS, Delhi.

Representational Image
Representational Image

Delhi: The National Capital on an average gets 76 cases of eye injuries sustained from firecrackers each year, according to a study by AIIMS, Delhi.

The data was revealed in a study named 'Prevalence of Firecracker Injury and outcomes with the demographic profile of patients visiting the Emergency Department of a Tertiary Care Center of North India.'

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The trend on the prevalence of firecracker injuries and its outcomes were studied with the demographic profile of patients who visited the premier institute's emergency department after the festive season of Diwali.

According to the outcomes of the study, about 87 cases of eye injuries due to firecrackers were witnessed in 2016. The trend was slightly decreased in 2017 as 56 patients visited the casualty for the same reason.

However, the number of patients was increased to 83 in 2018. The study revealed that these fore-borne incidents transpired primarily due to negligence (careless lightening, unsupervised children, delay in treatment, etc) on the part of people by not taking timely precaution and treatment.

Notably, after retrospective study of the previous year's data of 2017 and 2016, a pilot study was conducted for a period of one month during the festival of lights.

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The report further stated that out of 83 patients who visited the emergency department for eye injuries, 78 patients were identified to have developed eye injuries associated with firecrackers. "Out of these patients, almost 11 per cent were males and 14.45 per cent females. While 30.76 per cent were below the age of 10 and 47.37 per cent patients were between 10-20 year age group and 3.95 per cent were above 50," it said.

About 72.37 per cent were residents of Delhi while other patients belonged other States like Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan, it noted.

It also found that most were bystanders (48.6 per cent) and others were injured (47.3 per cent) while lighting firecrackers. Around 20 patients were admitted for corneal repair, others were discharged with a prescription of antibiotics/artificial tears (78.95 per cent), pressure banding (43.42 per cent) the same day.

The major complication observed was unilateral partial temporary loss of vision (93 per cent) and unilateral permanent complete loss of vision in 1 (1.32 per cent) patient and a bilateral permanent complete loss of vision in 1 (1.32 per cent) patient.

Talking about precautionary measures to avoid such untoward incident, Medical Superintendent at RP Eye Centre (AIIMS) Dr Shakti Gupta told ANI: "Parents should encourage their children for celebrating a cracker free Diwali by lighting diyas or candles which will not only prevent such injuries but will also be keep the environment clean."

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A senior doctor of at RP Eye Centre said that incidents of ophthalmic injuries due to firecrackers has not changed significantly over the years as there is a lack of awareness regarding deleterious repercussions of firecrackers. "Since the eye casualty cases have not been improved over the years necessary precautions must be taken like that eye protection glasses should be worn while bursting firecrackers and bystanders should always stand at a safe distance from crackers," he added.

"The cases of facial burn, eye irritation, foreign body, and blindness, were reported and were taken into consideration while studying the trend," said Dr Arushee Bhatnagar, who conducted the study under the guidance of Dr Shakti Gupta.

The study was done collecting retrospective data from the medical records department of sustained firecracker injuries in the eye during Diwali in the period of the last two years. (ANI)

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