[Skip to Content]
Access to paid content on this site is currently suspended due to excessive activity being detected from your IP address Please contact the publisher to request reinstatement.
[Skip to Content Landing]
February 1988

Impact of Vitamin A Supplementation on Xerophthalmia: A Randomized Controlled Community Trial

Author Affiliations

From the Ministry of Health, Government of Indonesia, Jakarta (Drs Djunaedi, Pandji, and Kusdiono); the International Center for Epidemiologic and Preventive Ophthalmology, Dana Center of the Wilmer Institute and School of Hygiene and Public Health, The Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore (Drs Sommer and Taylor); and Helen Keller International, New York (Dr Sommer).

Arch Ophthalmol. 1988;106(2):218-222. doi:10.1001/archopht.1988.01060130228033

• The value of biannual distribution of 200000 IU of vitamin A in preventing xerophthalmia was assessed in a randomized, controlled community-based trial involving 25 000 preschool children in 450 villages of northern Sumatra. Results indicate that distribution was associated with a dramatic decline in xerophthalmia prevalence; that concurrent controls were critical for distinguishing spontaneous from program-related changes; and that the apparent level of benefit depended on the choice of clinical indicator(s). Night blindness ceases to be an accurate reflection of impact when prevalence rates are low, and comparison of Bitot's spot rates should be confined to new cases of disease.