Glaucoma studies to establish screening, intervention guidelines
Three universities received funding from the CDC for their respective 5-year SIGHT studies investigating best practices to improve glaucoma screenings and intervention in vulnerable communities.
“By targeting vulnerable populations at high risk for glaucoma, specifically African Americans over age 40 years, Asians, older people (aged 65+ years) especially older Hispanics, those with a family history of glaucoma and those with diabetes, we can improve detection of glaucoma,” C. Gustavo De Moraes, MD, PhD, MPH, of Columbia University, and colleagues wrote.
Columbia University, University of Michigan and University of Alabama at Birmingham will conduct the prospective SIGHT (Screening and Interventions for Glaucoma and Eye Health Through Telemedicine) studies to establish protocols and guidelines for early intervention for glaucoma and other eye diseases.
The researchers will focus on identification and early intervention of glaucoma and eye diseases, modified strategies to address high-risk populations and cost evaluations of approaches. They will also evaluate change in visual acuity, quality of life, status of follow-up exams and early detection rates.
De Moraes and colleagues report these community-based partnerships can ensure broad reach of the proposed interventions and help sustain outcomes. They wrote that such alliances “allow for efficient use of existing resources and exchange of information between experts working in various areas of public health and other sectors.
“By establishing comprehensive protocols that have been tested and proven to have sufficient rigor, SIGHT studies can be scaled and replicated by other communities across the nation, with the aim to reduce vision impairment and blindness, as well as its burden to society,” De Moraes and colleagues wrote.