This is a prospective study of all cases of motorcycle related accidents with involvement of the eyes seen at the Irrua Specialist Teaching Hospital from January 2005 to December 2005. The study was conducted to assess the severity of ocular trauma, ocular structures mostly affected and initial effect on visual acuity in such injuries.
All cases referred to the eye clinic as well as cases presenting at the Accident and Emergency Unit of the Hospital with eye trauma, with or without other associated injuries from motorcycle accidents were included (even if not referred to the Eye Clinic).
Fifty-six patients were seen. There were forty seven males (84%) and nine females (16%). The predominant age group was 21-30 years. Those mostly affected were students (14.1%). Ten patients had associated head injury with or without fracture of the facial bones. Two patients had fracture of the femur. The lids, conjuctiva and cornea were the ocular structures mostly affected.
The use of protective helmets with facial covering for all motorcyclists should be enforced. Job creation for unemployed youths will make earning a living as commercial motorcyclists less attractive. Provision of good mass transportation system and an improvement in the road network will abolish the need for the use of motorcycle as a means for public transportation.