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An update on glaucoma treatment

Lucy C. Titcomb, MRPharmS, MCPP, is lead ophthalmic pharmacist, at the Birmingham and Midland Eye Centre, Birmingham

SUMMARY

Glaucoma comprises a group of eye diseases with various causes that result in optic neuropathy. The optic nerve becomes damaged, resulting in histopathological changes and loss of visual function. Glaucoma is the world’s second biggest cause of blindness.

The condition affects around 60 million people, of whom about 10 per cent become blind. In the UK, it accounts for 15 per cent of registered blind people, although this figure probably underestimates morbidity because many people who are eligible for registration do not appear in the statistics.

Classification of glaucomas is usually based on cause and mechanics (see Panel 1).

Panel 1: Classification of glaucoma

Primary glaucomas
• Open angle (eg, high tension, normal tension)
• Closed angle (ie, primary angle closure glaucoma)

Secondary glaucomas
• Open angle (eg, pigmentary, exfoliation syndrome, neovascular, lens-induced)
• Closed angle

Developmental glaucomas
(eg, primary congenital, secondary retinopathy of prematurity)

Full text PDF, 110K)

Citation: The Pharmaceutical Journal URI: 10002315

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