March 2012
Volume 53, Issue 14
Free
ARVO Annual Meeting Abstract  |   March 2012
Lifetime Risk for Blindness in Eyes with Open-Angle Glaucoma
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Dorothea Peters
    Lunds University, Department of Clinical Sciences Malmo, Ophthalmology, Skane University Hospital, Malmo, Sweden
  • Boel Bengtsson
    Lunds University, Department of Clinical Sciences Malmo, Ophthalmology, Skane University Hospital, Malmo, Sweden
  • Anders Heijl
    Lunds University, Department of Clinical Sciences Malmo, Ophthalmology, Skane University Hospital, Malmo, Sweden
  • Footnotes
    Commercial Relationships  Dorothea Peters, None; Boel Bengtsson, None; Anders Heijl, None
  • Footnotes
    Support  Swedish Research Council grant K2011-63X-10426-19-3, the Herman Järnhardt Foundation, the Foundation for Visually Impaired in Former Malmöhus County, and Crown Princess Margareta's Foundation.
Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science March 2012, Vol.53, 4488. doi:
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      Dorothea Peters, Boel Bengtsson, Anders Heijl; Lifetime Risk for Blindness in Eyes with Open-Angle Glaucoma. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2012;53(14):4488.

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Abstract
 
Purpose:
 

To analyze the lifetime risk for blindness and the time with blindness from glaucoma in eyes with primary open-angle glaucoma (POAG) or exfoliative glaucoma (PEXG).

 
Methods:
 

Retrospective chart review of all patients with POAG or PEXG who had been followed at the glaucoma outpatient department at Skåne University Hospital, Malmö, and who died between January 2006 and June 2010. Our department provides medical care for approximately ¾ of all glaucoma patients living in the catchment area. One eye per patient was included in the analysis. If both eyes had glaucoma one was randomly selected. We recorded the extent of visual field loss (as Mean Deviation) and visual acuity (VA) at the time of diagnosis and at the last visit. Low vision and blindness were defined according to WHO criteria, and the major reason for either was noted. The risk for blindness from glaucoma was analyzed by cumulative incidence calculation.

 
Results:
 

Four hundred and twenty-three glaucomatous eyes, 65% POAG and 35% PEX, were included in the analyses. At diagnosis mean visual field loss was -10.1 dB (median -7.8 dB, -32.7 - +1.7) and median VA was 0.8 (.0 - 1.25). At that time 17 eyes (4%) had low vision and 20 eyes (4.7%) were blind in glaucoma. At the last visit 48 eyes (11.4%) had low vision and 128 eyes (30.3%) were blind from OAG. Mean duration of blindness in those eyes was 4.7 years ± 4 (median 3 years, <1y - 19y). Mean time with a glaucoma diagnosis was 10.3 years ± 6.3 (median 10y, <1y - 29y). The cumulative incidence for eyes to become blind after receiving a glaucoma diagnosis was 23% at 10 years and 47% at 20 years.

 
Conclusions:
 

Nearly one third of all eyes became blind from glaucoma. Average time with a diagnosis of glaucoma was approximately 10 years, and the cumulative incidence of blindness from OAG at 10 years was 23%. We believe that these figures should to be representative for Northern Europe.  

 
Keywords: clinical (human) or epidemiologic studies: prevalence/incidence • low vision 
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