A Study of Prevalence and Risk Factors of Digital Eye Strain among Diabetic and Non-Diabetic Patients

Main Article Content

Kaneez Fatima
Sojhla Saleem


Background: The proliferation of digital devices in modern society has led to a significant increase in the prevalence of Digital Eye Strain (DES), characterized by symptoms such as eye fatigue, dryness, and headaches. This condition poses a particular risk to individuals with systemic conditions, such as diabetes mellitus, which can exacerbate ocular symptoms. Understanding the relationship between DES and diabetes is crucial for developing targeted interventions to alleviate symptoms and improve quality of life.

Objective: This study aims to assess the prevalence and risk factors of Digital Eye Strain among diabetic and non-diabetic individuals, examining the impact of digital device usage patterns, ocular surface health, and visual discomfort symptoms in both groups.

Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted at the Eye Department of Jeddah National Hospital, involving 150 diabetic and 150 non-diabetic participants, employing purposive sampling. Participants were evaluated for DES symptoms, digital device usage habits, and clinical signs of ocular surface health, including Tear Break Up Time (TBUT), Fluorescein Stains (FS), and Tear Meniscus Height. Data analysis was performed using SPSS version 25, focusing on statistical differences between the two groups.

Results: The mean age of participants was 56 years (SD=10.3) for the diabetic group and 54 years (SD=8) for the non-diabetic group, with a balanced gender distribution across both groups. Diabetic participants demonstrated a significantly lower TBUT (median=5 seconds, IQR=2) compared to non-diabetics (median=7 seconds, IQR=1), P=0.001. DES symptoms, particularly eye fatigue and headaches, were more prevalent among diabetics, with over four hours of computer usage exacerbating symptoms (eye fatigue: 57%, P=0.001; headache: 32.8%, P=0.029). Environmental and behavioral factors, including improper illumination and infrequent breaks, were significantly associated with increased DES symptoms.

Conclusion: Digital Eye Strain is more prevalent and severe among diabetic individuals, with significant implications for ocular and general well-being. The findings underscore the need for targeted digital health interventions and ergonomic practices to mitigate DES symptoms, especially among those with diabetes.

Article Details

How to Cite
Fatima, K., & Saleem, S. (2024). A Study of Prevalence and Risk Factors of Digital Eye Strain among Diabetic and Non-Diabetic Patients. Journal of Health and Rehabilitation Research, 4(1), 1302–1306. https://doi.org/10.61919/jhrr.v4i1.318
Author Biographies

Kaneez Fatima, Jeddah National Hospital Saudi Arabia.

Specialist Ophthalmologist, Jeddah National Hospital, Saudi Arabia.

Sojhla Saleem, Abeer Medical Center Jeddah Saudi Arabia.

Consultant Internal Medicine, Abeer Medical Center Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.


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