Complications of trachoma include:
1. Corneal scarring: Trachoma can cause scarring of the cornea, the transparent front part of the eye. This scarring can lead to visual impairment and even blindness.
2. Trichiasis: Trachoma can cause the eyelashes to turn inward and rub against the cornea, leading to irritation, pain, and further damage to the cornea.
3. Conjunctival scarring: Trachoma can cause scarring of the conjunctiva, the thin membrane that covers the white part of the eye and lines the inside of the eyelids. This scarring can lead to the eyelids turning inward (entropion) or outward (ectropion), causing discomfort and further eye damage.
4. Secondary bacterial infections: Trachoma weakens the immune system of the eye, making it more susceptible to secondary bacterial infections. These infections can cause additional damage to the cornea and increase the risk of vision loss.
5. Blindness: If left untreated, trachoma can lead to irreversible blindness. It is one of the leading causes of preventable blindness worldwide.
6. Social and economic impact: Trachoma primarily affects populations in low-income countries with limited access to healthcare. The disease can lead to reduced productivity, increased healthcare costs, and economic burden on affected communities.