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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 16-20

Rubella virus in association with congenital cataract at makkah eye complex

1 Shami Eye Center, Al Neelain University, Khartoum, Sudan
2 Department of Ophthalmology, Faculty of Medicine, Al Neelain University, Khartoum, Sudan
3 Department of Pediatric Ophthalmology, Makkah Eye Complex, Khartoum, Sudan

Correspondence Address:
Prof. Mahgoub Saleem
Department of Ophthalmology, Faculty of Medicine, Al Neelain University, Khartoum 11111, P.O. Box 10139
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/bijo.bijo_12_20

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Background: Rubella is a viral disease that causes many systemic and ocular postnatal anomalies known as congenital rubella syndrome (CRS). The most common ocular disorder is congenital cataract. Purpose: The purpose of this study was to determine the prevalence of CRS and its association with congenital cataract and systemic comorbidities. Materials and Methods: In this cross-sectional, hospital-based study, full ophthalmic and systemic examination was carried out on 45 infants (n = 45), aged below 1 year, with congenital cataract, attending the Pediatric Ophthalmology Clinic at Makkah Eye Complex, Khartoum, Sudan, in the period between February 2015 and June 2016. The 45 children were booked for phacoemulsification plus intraocular lens implantation. The children's biodata and maternal and neonatal history were obtained from the mothers and plotted in case investigation forms. Venous blood sample and lens aspirate were studied for rubella IgM, IgG, and polymerase chain reaction beside rubella virus detection in the National Laboratory of Measles and Rubella. Results: Blood and lens aspirate was collected from the study infants, which revealed that 38 infants (84%) were negative for rubella, whereas only seven infants (16%) showed positive result. The majority of the rubella-positive patients (n = 5, 71%) had bilateral cataract and only two infants had unilateral cataracts. Only one rubella-positive case (14.3%) had microphthalmia in one eye. Unfortunately, screening for pigmentary retinopathy was not done postoperatively. Four (57%) out of the seven rubella-positive cases reported systemic CRS. Microcephaly, patent ductus arteriosus, ventricular septal defect, and pulmonary hypertension were reported in one case (14.3%) each. Three mothers (43%) from the rubella-positive group had a history of febrile illness during pregnancy. Conclusion: Congenital cataract and systemic comorbidities are common in infants with congenital rubella.

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