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Ninita Helen Brown, Sandra Stinnett, Kelly W Muir; An upright eye drop dispenser. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2015;56(7 ):5749.
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Most patients with glaucoma are prescribed eye drops to be administered often multiple times per day. Inability to successfully administer drops leads to missed doses. Poor glaucoma control can result in irreversible visual loss. Current eye drop bottles require the patient to recline the head and aim the bottle, tasks which are difficult for elderly patients with poor vision, arthritis or tremor. The purpose of this project is to test the utllity of a novel upright dispenser.
Adult patients with a diagnosis of medically-treated glaucoma were enrolled. Patients who provided informed consent were shown a presentation demonstrating use of the upright dispenser. Participants used the upright dispenser and a conventional bottle separately to administer artificial tear drops into each eye for 3 trials. A trained observer noted if 1) a drop was successfully instilled, 2) drops rolled down the cheek indicating excess drop expression, 3) the bottle tip was contaminated, and 4) the time for drop instillation. Participants were given a survey querying satisfaction and feedback.
11 participants aged 55-87 years (mean 72 years) included 5 men, 6 women. 9 participants reported problems aiming the conventional bottle. 8 participants successfully instilled a drop with the upright dispenser on their first trial. The mean time to drop instillation improved for the upright dispenser with successive trails (trial 1: mean 41.7+16.8 seconds, trial 3: mean 27.9+16.6 seconds; p=0.03). There was no contamination with the upright dispenser. Participants reported satisfaction with the upright dispenser.
Participants with glaucoma successfully administered eye drops with a novel, upright dispenser, even on initial trial in this ongoing study. Time to successful drop instillation improved with practice. Addiytionally, there was no tip contamination with the upright dispenser. An eye drop dispenser which allows patients to administer eye drops with the head in the upright position has the potential to improve the success and comfort of daily treatment for patients with medically-managed glaucoma.
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