Rehabilitation of vision disorder and improved quality of life in patients with primary open angle glaucoma.
Luo RJ, Liu SR, Tian Z, Zhu WH, Zhuo YH, Liao RD.
Department of Ophthalmology, First Affiliated Hospital of Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou, Guangdong 510080, China.
Primary open angle glaucoma (POAG) is a common cause of irreversible blindness. The variable etiology of POAG poses significant challenges for treatment and rehabilitation. We analyzed a large POAG patient cohort during treatment to reveal possible causes of vision disorder, assess vision-related quality of life (VRQL), and to evaluate the efficacy of rehabilitative treatments.
We analyzed the visional disturbances in 500 POAG patients (890 eyes) by regular ophthalmic examination and visual field examination using Humphrey 30° perimetry. Appropriate rehabilitative treatments for POAG were prescribed based on results of clinical examination and included correction of ametropia, health education, counseling, and the fitting of typoscopes. VRQL was assessed before and after treatment by a VRQL self-assessment questionnaire.
Scores on the VRQL self-assessment were significantly lower compared to healthy controls. The primary cause of the vision disturbances was ametropia (97.99%), and 51.61% of the ametropia eyes had not received appropriate correction. The secondary causes of visual impairment were glaucomatous neurodegeneration (26.29%), complicated cataract, or other accompanying eye diseases. The causes of the clinical low vision (44 patients) were glaucomatous neurodegeneration (32 eyes), fundus diseases (23 eyes), keratopathy (11 eyes), and other eye diseases (10 eyes). The VRQL scores of patients improved significantly after rehabilitation and the correction of ametropia (P < 0.01). Twenty-five patients with low vision were provided with typoscopes, and 21 (84%) experienced significant functional recovery, while the remaining low vision patients could see letter lines two or more levels lower (smaller) on visual charts in a near vision test.
Vision disorders in POAG patients are common and severe. Appropriate rehabilitation, especially the correction of ametropia, can significantly improve VRQL as revealed by the self-assessment of POAG patients.