Aida Giloyan, Diana Muradyan, and Vahe Khachadourian
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Meghrigian Institute Publishes Research on Visual Impairment in Diabetic Patients

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The American University of Armenia (AUA) is proud to share the news on a recent publication by researchers at the Garo Meghrigian Institute for Preventive Ophthalmology (Meghrigian Institute) at the AUA Turpanjian School of Public Health (SPH). The article, titled “Visual impairment and associated risk factors in patients with diabetes mellitus in Tavush and Armavir provinces of Armenia,” was published in the journal of International Ophthalmology, a peer-reviewed journal that provides clinicians with articles on topics covering all subspecialties of ophthalmology with a broad international scope. 

The study authored by Aida Giloyan (MPH ‘07), MS, Diana Muradyan (MPH ‘20), MD, PhD, and Vahe Khachadourian (MPH ‘11), MD, PhD, estimates the prevalence of visual impairment and the associated risk factors in individuals with diabetes mellitus (DM) in Armenia. The research findings show prevalence of visual impairment and blindness in 12.1% and 0.9% of the study population, respectively. Overall, 22.4% of participants had diabetic retinopathy. In the adjusted analysis, advanced age, higher education, DM duration, the presence of diabetic retinopathy, age-related macular degeneration, cataract, and glaucoma were found to be significantly associated with visual impairment. 

The findings highlight the importance and need for regular eye screening and diabetes prevention programs in the country. Continuous educational programs on diabetes self-management among patients with DM can reduce complications of diabetes including vision loss associated with the disease.

The AUA Turpanjian School of Public Health works actively to improve population health and health services in Armenia and the region through interdisciplinary education and development of public health professionals to be leaders in public health, health services research and evaluation, and health care delivery and management.