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AAO-SOE Joint Meeting Nov. 9 glaucoma research highlights
Date:11/8/2008

estigation by prospectively collecting data for 58 patients who were referred with similar optic nerve or visual field changes and carotid artery stenosis as part of the hospital audit system and found that 17 percent of these patients had significant carotid artery narrowing.

The study results are significant because they add to the evidence for the role of reduced blood flow to the optic nerve as a possible cause or predisposing factor for glaucoma or glaucoma-like optic nerve damage. Moreover, the results indicate a possible association with significant carotid artery narrowing which is a potentially serious condition as it carries the risk of stroke. "The study is of a small scale and will obviously need further research to confirm the findings," the authors say. "However, in the meantime it may be prudent to consider referring patients with progressive or asymmetric glaucoma despite normal eye pressure---especially in the presence of cardiovascular risk factors such as hypertension, hypercholesterolemia or ischemia heart disease---for carotid artery Doppler scan to pick up those who could be at high risk for stroke and may benefit from carotid artery treatment."

Could Religious Beliefs Affect Compliance with Ocular Treatment?

For people of strong faith, religious beliefs and related cultural taboos can have a powerful impact on how they care for their health, including the medical treatments they choose to accept. Increasingly, ophthalmologists (Eye M.D.s) in the US and other countries, care for patients of diverse backgrounds. This is accelerating the need for reliable information on the interaction of religious beliefs and compliance with prescribed treatments. The effectiveness of glaucoma treatment, in particular, often depends on patients' ability and willingness to self-administer eye drop medications on a regular schedule over months or years. Glaucoma patients often notice no symptoms in the early stages of the disease,
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Contact: Mary Wade
mwade@aao.org
415-531-3061
American Academy of Ophthalmology
Source:Eurekalert

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