June 2022
Volume 63, Issue 7
Open Access
ARVO Annual Meeting Abstract  |   June 2022
Population perceived eye strain due to digital devices usage during COVID-19 pandemic
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Samar Al-Swailem
    Research, King Khaled Eye Specialist Hospital, Riyadh, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
  • Ashwaq Mohammed Almalki
    Research, King Khaled Eye Specialist Hospital, Riyadh, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
    Ophthalmology, 2. King Abdulaziz Medical City, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, Jeddah, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
  • Mohammed Alblowi
    Research, King Khaled Eye Specialist Hospital, Riyadh, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
  • Ayat Aldosari
    Research, King Khaled Eye Specialist Hospital, Riyadh, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
    Ophthalmology, 2. King Abdulaziz Medical City, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, Jeddah, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
  • Rajiv Khandekar
    Research, King Khaled Eye Specialist Hospital, Riyadh, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
    Ophthalmology, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
  • Footnotes
    Commercial Relationships   Samar Al-Swailem None; Ashwaq Almalki None; Mohammed Alblowi None; Ayat Aldosari None; Rajiv Khandekar None
  • Footnotes
    Support  None
Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science June 2022, Vol.63, 3371 – A0158. doi:
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      Samar Al-Swailem, Ashwaq Mohammed Almalki, Mohammed Alblowi, Ayat Aldosari, Rajiv Khandekar; Population perceived eye strain due to digital devices usage during COVID-19 pandemic. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2022;63(7):3371 – A0158.

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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Abstract

Purpose : Lockdowns from the COVID-19 caused a significant increase in the use of digital devices. This increase could result in ocular sequelae such as eyestrain. We used a cross-sectional survey to assess the magnitude severity and determinants of eye strain among Saudi population during the COVID-19 pandemic, lockdown and abuse of digital devices.

Methods : Saudi population of both genders, aged > 15 years old were invited. The questionnaire included demography, eye strain related symptoms, severity, and use of optical aid during covid-19 lockdown. The frequency and severity of eye strain were calculated. Based on the sum of 15 eye strain related sign and symptom, Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS) score was graded as none/ mild moderate and severe CVS. CVS was associated/correlated to determinants. The total score was calculated using a formula score of A X B for each sign and symptom,. The sum of 15 eye strain related sign and symptom score was further graded as <30 = no or mild CVS, 30 to 59 = moderate CVS and more than 60 = severe CVS.

Results : There were 2,009 surveyed participants. Their median age was 20 years. The purpose of using digital devices was work and social purposes for 68.4%, and 61% used the digital devices for more than 6 hours daily. The prevalence of knowledge about CVS and ‘20-20 rule for using digital devices’ was 9.4% and 6.9 respectively. Two hundred and eighty-two (14%) of the study participants were diagnosed with COVID-19, and 223 (11.1%) were quarantined. Three fourth of participants did not use contact lens (CL) or spectacles, 393 (19.6%) were using spectacles, 59 (2.9%) were using CL and 55 (2.7%) were using both Spectacles and CL. The most experienced symptoms of eye strain due to digital devices use were headache, burning, itching, tearing, and redness of eyes. The median of eye strain symptom score was 20 (IQR 10: 32). Based on the symptom score, ‘no/ mild’ grade of eye strain was perceived by 1,486 (74%), moderate eye strain by 468 (23.3%) and severe eye strain by 55 (2.7%) participants. The daily six hours usage of digital devices was found to have a significant and positive association to the eye strain severity grade during COVID-19 lockdown.

Conclusions : Saudi-population suffered from eye strain during COVID-19 lockdown due to excessive digital devices use. Health care provider should educate general population about healthy measures during daily use of digital devices.

This abstract was presented at the 2022 ARVO Annual Meeting, held in Denver, CO, May 1-4, 2022, and virtually.

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